Dignitaries gather for the unveiling of a new totem pole Thursday at the BC Elders Gathering.

Totem pole unveiled at BC Elders Gathering

An exquisite totem pole was unveiled Thursday at the close of the B.C. Elders Gathering.

An exquisite totem pole was unveiled Thursday at the close of the B.C. Elders Gathering.

Tsilhqot’in Chief Joe Alphonse introduced master carver Skip Saunders from the Nuxalk Nation in Bella Coola.  Saunders is a third generation carver, grandson of Clayton Mack.

“The totem tells the story of the strength of our families,” explained Karen Anderson from the Nuxalk Nation, adding that being the low man on the totem pole is a place of strength and connection to Mother Earth.

“This totem binds us together as people of the land,” she continued.

“This was a very powerful and very special thing to be asked to do,” Saunders said. “As hereditary chief it’s my job to help the people, and bringing forth this art is helping the people.”

He said that the log chosen for the totem pole has ties to his community going back 30 years.

“It was milled in Saloompt, and waited 25 years for me to carve it,” he continued. “When I was young and heard about the log, I said it meant nothing to me; now it means everything.”

Saunders slept beside the pole for three months working on it every day.

“This pole is telling you we are one family tied together,” he said.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

It’s a go: Williams Lake Garden Club prepares for summer garden tour

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, some measures are in place for this year’s garden tour

B.C. First Nation owned solar farm connected to the grid

Construction was completed by the Tsilhqot’in Nation last year

CRD library to offer curbside pick up in Williams Lake beginning June 9

Due to COVID-19 the library has been closed to the public since March 17

Williams Lake mayor, doctors, tourism, chamber to provide updates at June tailgate event

A maximum of 30 vehicles can attend, event will be livestreamed

Grants for assistance extinguished for independent fire departments within Cariboo Regional District

Ten fire departments will be impacted, CRD-funded and managed fire departments will not be impacted

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Thanks for helping the Williams Lake Tribune continue its mission to provide trusted local news

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park at large

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

No charges to be laid against 22 northern B.C. pipeline protesters

Twenty-two people were arrested in February, but Crown has decided not to pursue charges

‘Great Regional Air Hug’ being organized by the Vanderhoof International Airshow Society

A multi-aircraft flyover over the region is being planned for August 15.

Plan in place for BC Ferries to start increasing service levels

Ferry corporation reaches temporary service level agreement with province

Most Read