The Village of Port Alice sign at the Highway 30 cutoff has been updated with a ‘Frigon’ addition.
The signage, which used to read ‘A beautiful scenic drive awaits’, now reads ‘A beautiful scenic drive awaits on the Frigon Road’.
The village unofficially renamed the road after a village-wide contest was held last summer to name the distinctive road.
Port Alice resident Valerie Eyford entered the winning submission the ‘Frigon Road’, which is not only a clever pun but also a homage to pioneer and early settler of Port Alice, Ned Frigon.
The contest was the vision of Polly Steele and Rose Klein-Beekman, who are the Port Alice Village Council Delegates to the North Island Tourism Committee.
“We had a long-range plan from the beginning,” said Klein-Beekman, adding, “to name the road and then do something with it.”
Last October, Klein-Beekman and Steele asked the village to investigate whether they would be able to install a sign at the Highway 30 cutoff.
“The village council was very cooperative with us when we said we would like a sign, and then we started working on it and figuring out how we could do it,” she explained.
Klein-Beekman and Steele went to the Highway 30 cutoff to take pictures of the site and realized they might be able to add an addition onto the existing signage.
“A council person had contacted me saying ‘I have an idea for the sign’ and the mayor contacted me saying ‘I have an idea for the sign’ and we all had the same idea,” laughed Klien-Beekman. “So we figured we must be right with that idea!”
Finance Officer Bonnie Danyk said although the village was unable to secure grant funding for the sign project, they were able to fund it through the village’s tourism budget.
The signage was created by Grant Signs in Campbell River and officially installed on June 21.
“I’m so pleased with it,” noted Klein-Beekman. “I think we are doing everything right trying to attract tourists here, but we have to make sure they remember us. ”
Klein-Beekman and Steele have also made ‘I drove the Frigon Road’ t-shirts, which tourists can purchase to remember their experience on the scenic drive and in the village.
“It makes people say ‘where is that?’ and once you are here, how can you not fall in love with the place?” said Klein-Beekman, adding, “The best advertising is word-of-mouth and if you give them something they can tell their friends about – you never know where it will lead to.”
The new Frigon signs are not the end of Frigon things in Port Alice, as the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 180 in Port Alice is also producing a cookbook which will be dubbed “The Frigon Cookbook” and will be available at the village’s Canada Day celebrations.