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Organization acknowledges Powell Forest Canoe Route founder

Originator receives paddle carved by Tla’amin Nation elder
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PRESENTED GIFT: Powell Forest Canoe Route recently held a presentation to recognize efforts of the originator of the backcountry route. At the presentation ceremony [from left] were: Tracey Ellis, executive director, Powell River Tourism; Randy Mitchell, spokesperson and historian for the Friends of the Powell Forest Canoe Route Society; Charlie Bob, Tla’amin Nation carver, Gerhard Tollas, originator of the Powell Forest Canoe Route, with Sigrid Tollas; and Telis Savvaidis, past president of Powell River Chamber of Commerce.

Friends of the Powell Forest Canoe Route recently presented canoe route originator Gerhard Tollas with a paddle carved by Tla’amin Nation elder Charlie Bob.

Friends spokesperson and historian Randy Mitchell presented Tollas with the paddle, alongside Powell River Chamber of Commerce past president Telis Savvaidis and Tourism Powell River executive director Tracey Ellis.

“With 40 years of enjoyment of the Powell Forest Canoe Route for locals and visitors alike, we wanted to take a moment to thank Gerhard for his tireless work and advocacy for the route,” stated Mitchell, in a media release.

In 1982, the chamber of commerce was also the Powell River Visitor Centre and Tollas was instrumental in the formation of a unique collaboration of the BC Forest Service recreation program, the joint federal-provincial employment bridging assistance program, and Powell River Chamber of Commerce, according to the release.

The building of the Powell Forest Canoe Route opened difficult access to a series of lakes in a wilderness adventure that rivalled the already popular Bowron Lakes in the interior of BC, the release stated. The initial build of the canoe route began in September 1982 and ended in July 1983 with the end of program funding.

Friends of the Powell Forest Canoe Route is a local nonprofit society that advocates for the future continuity of the route.

 

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