Shane Cook of Alert Bay performs during the grand opening of Sea Wolf Adventures cultural tours at Telegraph Cove Saturday. The First Nations business will provide tours and water taxi service to Alert Bay and Hanson Island out if its new Telegraph Cove office.

Sea Wolf to offer cultural adventure

Sea Wolf Adventures held a grand opening ceremony Saturday evening at Telegraph Cove.

TELEGRAPH COVE—A mix of tourists and summer residents were invited to take part in the latest attraction at this historic seaside resort Saturday.

And local First Nations band members provided a sneak preview.

Sea Wolf Adventures, a cultural tour and water taxi service offered beginning this month by Mike Willie, held a grand opening ceremony Saturday evening featuring drumming, singing and dancing by a multi-band assemblage ranging from Alert Bay and Fort Rupert children to ‘Namgis hereditary chief William “Wa” Wasden, who led the drum circle and served as de facto master of ceremonies.

“There’s a place called Yyalis — Alert Bay — 10 minutes ride from here, so you do not have to go far to explore history and culture,” Willie told an audience arrayed along the end of the boardwalk near the Whale Interpretive Centre. “You don’t have to fly to Egypt or anything. There’s culture here thousands of years old and we will have a lot to offer.”

Sea Wolf Adventures, which has an office right on the boardwalk of this popular summer destination, offers afternoon tours to both Alert Bay — featuring the U’Mista Cultural Centre — and the cultivated cedar gardens of Hanson Island. By morning, it provides water taxi service to Alert Bay to those who want to spend a half-day exploring Cormorant Island in unguided fashion.

Saturday’s grand opening featured a variety of historical Kwakwala’wakw dances and songs. Following speeches by Wasden and Willie, spectators were welcomed to take part in a social dance, and the vast majority jumped at the opportunity.

“There are no rules to how you have to dance,” Wasden told the crowd. “As long as you’re enjoying yourselves.”

Wasden introduced each dance by explaining the characters portrayed and the stories they represented. He also touched on the First Nations peoples’ ties to the region, sharing locations by their Kwak’wala names. Wasden also shared the darker period of Kwakwaka’wakw history, when the government outlawed the potlatch and confiscated historic masks and other items in the 1920s, and shared how his ancestors stood strong in the face of this act, going underground and risking jail to continue their tradition until the potlatch was restored and many of the potlatch items returned to the U’mista Cultural Centre.

The addition of Sea Wolf Adventures to Telegraph Cove’s attractions is the first specifically dedicated to First Nations cultural exploration and education.

“This will add not only to tourism and business on North Vancouver Island, but this is going to add to the experience of visitors by exposing them to the culture of people who have lived here for thousands of years,” said Gordie Graham, owner of the resort.

Willie, an educator at Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’wx School in Port Hardy, said his ultimate goal is to raise enough money to fund a language revitalization program.

“That’s the whole idea of this business,” he said. “I decided I had to think outside the box for a way to fund this kind of program.”

For information on the tours or water taxi service, call 250-928-WOLF or visit www.seawolfadventures.ca.

 

Just Posted

Adopted pet pig gets killed and eaten

Animal was adopted out by SPCA staff in the Cowichan Valley

Woss Forestry Program now officially tuition free

All particpants for the first intake will have their tuition funded

Snowfall this morning in Port Hardy

Environment Canada reports 5 to 10 centimeters

RDMW frustrated over WFP response to logging trucks on the highway

“The only way you are going to have our trust back is if you sit with us all at the table.”

Working group discusses public intoxication problem in Port Hardy

The aim is to “set up a framework to make the community a safer place.”

President praises nearly 1,800 volunteers at B.C. Games

Ashley Wadhwani sits down with the Kamloops 2018 B.C. Winter Games President Niki Remesz

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Concert-goers unfazed by Hedley sexual misconduct allegations

Frontman Jacob Hoggard thanked fans from the ‘bottom of our hearts’ at Halifax’s Scotiabank Centre

Vancouver Island job market ever-evolving

Various sectors driving employment in region will be represented at Black Press career fair in Comox Feb. 8

Original B.C. Games participant-turned-sensei officiating 39 years later

Langley judo sensei was a competitor at the inaugural B.C. Winter Games 40 years ago

Police watchdog probes B.C. man’s taser death in alleged parental child abduction

Independent Investigations Office called in after one male dies

PHOTOS: Harnessing diverse abilities on the court at the B.C. Games

Basketball is one of two Special Olympics events at the B.C. Winter Games in Kamloops

B.C. VIEWS: Our not-so-New Democrats don’t rock the boat

Finance Minister Carole James takes the wheel, steers similar course

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: Canadians all smiles after record medal haul

Team Canada is taking home a record 29 medals from Pyeongchang – 11 gold, eight silver, 10 bronze

Most Read