Representatives from the Kootenay Camas Project went before Castlegar city council Monday night to request help with the conservation and restoration of the historically significant plant in Millennium Park.
Camas was an important carbohydrate vegetable food source to First Nations for thousands of years. The bulb was dug, baked in an earthen oven, dried and preserved to be used as food year round. Camas only grows in the Pacific Northwest and can be found in various locations along undisturbed flood plains. Castlegar is the premier location for Camas in the interior.
“Camas is a buried cultural and ecological treasure; it has been in this park for a millennia and we really think that Millennium Park and Camas go together,” said project representative Megan Read. “Camas distribution tells a story. It tells the story of the confluence of the rivers, of the flood plains. Where culture and ecology come together and form this incredibly rich place where people harvested their food and traded.”
The group requested “A formal acknowledgement of the ecological and cultural significance of camas and its habitats in Millennium Park and on city-owned lands.”
The proposal also suggested the following actions: a designated conservation and restoration area in the park, permanent interpretive signs, and a management plan for natural areas with a focus on camas.
A motion was put forward by councillor Deb McIntosh and seconded by Sue Heaton-Sherstobitoff to refer the request to the civic works committee, which both councillors sit on.
Castlegar’s brand under review
In financial business, council decided to award Twist Marketing a contract to conduct a marketing performance audit to measure the performance of the city brand established in 2008.
The flower logo and “Happily ever after” motto can be seen on city stationary, advertisements, signage, websites and promotional materials. The $9,500 will come out of the city branding initiative line item of the annual budget.
BC Ambassador candidate Rachael teBulte came before council to explain her candidacy and the Castlegar-related elements of her pageant presentation including her community table and choice of a traditional Doukhobor dress for the costume element of her community speech. She will be fundraising around town for the BC Ambassador program.
You can vote for teBulte for the People’s Choice award daily at bcambassador.com.