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Paddle for Wild Salmon Update (October 22) – Matsqui to Katzie

Friday, October 22nd 2010 1:14:42pm

Media Advisory

The Wild Salmon People pass half-way in their journey to Vancouver

Salmon Are Sacred’s ‘Paddle for Wild Salmon’ launches from Matsqui (Abbotsford) at 10am this morning destined for Pitt Meadows where they will be hosted by Katzie First Nation.  The paddlers will be joined by a canoe team at the confluence of the Stave River and will pull into Katzie at 4pm.  

The seven-day journey which started by rafting to Hope through Hell’s Gate arrives into Vanier Park at 9am in Vancouver on Monday (25th) with a march across Burrard Bridge to the opening of the Cohen Commission to support Justice Cohen in his investigation of the truth about our wild salmon.  

Tomorrow (23rd), the Paddle for Wild Salmon will leave Katzie for Musqueam for an evening event hosted by Musqueam Indian Band with a series of stops along the way. Please refer to schedule below for details:

WHAT: Paddle for Wild Salmon will leave Katzie
WHEN: October 23. 2010 @ 8:00 a.m.

WHAT: Fin Donnelly MP and Chief Rhonda Larrabee (Qayqayt First Nation) will welcome the paddlers. There will be a press conference at 10:30 a.m.
WHEN: October 23. 2010 @ 10:00a.m.
WHERE: Lands at New Westminster at the Fraser River Discovery Centre

WHAT: The paddle leaves New Westminster at 11:30 a.m. destined for Musqueam for an evening event hosted by Musqueam Indian Band. John Cummins MP, Spencer Chandra Herbert MLA, Peter Julian MP, Michael Sather MLA and Grand Chief Saul Terry are expected to join the paddle
WHEN: Leaves New Westminster at 11:30 a.m.

Paddlers will be joined by kayakers, yachts, whale watching boats and other canoes including two dug outs making the journey across the Salish Sea from Victoria.  First Nations leaders, fishermen and wilderness tourism operators are out in force supporting Alexandra Morton and the Wild Salmon People as they make their historic journey to Vancouver.  Chief Marilyn Baptiste of the Xeni Gwet’in First Nations Government and Chief Rhoda Peters of Chawathil First Nation are paddling today (22nd) with over 50 others in Voyageur canoes donated by Ridge Wilderness Adventures and a safety raft representing Fraser River Raft Expeditions.  

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs is expected to join the paddle over the weekend.  Shawn A-in-chut Atleo (Assembly of First Nations National Chief) and Grand Chief Clarence Pennier (Sto:Lo Tribal Council) wished the paddlers a safe journey at the start in Hope on Wednesday (20th).  Alexandra Morton is paddling with a paddle donated by the Chief Louie Paddle Company and Cheslatta Carrier Nation.  

A Sacred Salmon scroll made from elk hide by Darren Charlie of Chehalis First Nation is also making the journey to Vancouver.  The scroll has toured the Fraser River watershed and now has over 200 signatures from wild salmon champions including George Abbott, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation.   The scroll will be presented to Justice Cohen on Monday (25th).  

Squamish Nation has donated ‘Calling Wild Salmon People’ billboard advertisements across the City of Vancouver including signs on Burrard Bridge.  The Mayor of Vancouver, Gregor Robertson, is joining the Paddle for Wild Salmon on Monday (25th) and Joyce Murray MP will be at Jericho Beach on Sunday (24th) to speak at an event welcoming the paddlers into the City of Vancouver.        

In May, the ‘Get Out Migration’ attracted over five thousand people to a rally at the BC Parliament buildings.   On Monday (25th) the flotilla will paddle from Jericho Beach leaving at 8.30am into Vanier Park (from 9am) with boats gathering under Burrard Bridge and a welcome ceremony by Squamish Nation.  The final leg of the journey will start at 10am with a march from Vanier Park to the opening of the Cohen Commision (701 W. Georgia) and a ‘Justice for Wild Salmon’ rally at the Vancouver Art Gallery (12 Noon start).  The Wild Salmon People will call on Justice Cohen to demand full disease disclosure from the Norwegian salmon feedlots on the migration path of the Fraser sockeye.  

For more details about the itinerary and meeting points en-route, visit:  http://www.salmonaresacred.org/itinerary-paddle

To arrange interviews with Alexandra Morton and the paddlers, please contact:

Don Staniford on 250-230-1172 (cell)

Alexandra Morton on 250-974-7086 (cell)