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Should be: Canada’s Capital of Western Heritage

Attending the City of Williams Lake rebranding meeting, I was reminded of the words as quoted in an e-mail.


Attending the City of Williams Lake rebranding meeting, I was reminded of the words as quoted in an e-mail to me from the city’s Alan Madrigga.

“We aren’t accepting presentations at the meeting. It will be an information presentation primarily, with a chance for questions about the presentation at the end.”

Those in attendance would only be allowed to listen to what was already fairly well known, like a mother giving a child bad tasting medicine, more blarney about why the city needs to rebrand itself.

Following an uproar from those in attendance, Mayor Kerry Cook relented and many were able to express their opinion.

In listening and watching Madrigga’s Power Point presentation it seems the whole affair is, as I am reminded, similar to the Campbell government’s decision to sell BC Rail and the invoking of the hated HST tax.

The city, mayor and council appears to view itself as having a mandate to do whatever it likes, damn the torpedos it’s full speed ahead.

By the time the next election rolls around everybody will have forgotten the whole issue and Williams Lake may have long since taken on a handle somewhat like the “Republic of Life.”

I reminded councillor Ivan Bonnell that when I ran for mayor in 2002 I argued at that time with fellow candidates Ivan Bonnell, Rick Gibson and Kerry Cook that Williams Lake should take on the handle “Canada’s Capital of Western Heritage.”

Ivan replied, “old news.” I believed at that time that it would be an important and possibly prosperous way for Williams Lake to gain unique world recognition, a name that would be subject to curiosity, and I continue to think, having such a handle would be, even today very relevant, and would have cost absolutely nothing.

I here quote a recent CBC broadcasting comment about the Calgary Stampede.

“Calgary Stampede: Celebrating Canada’s Western Heritage.

For 10 days in July, mild-mannered Calgarians don skin-tight wranglers, big shiny belts and even bigger Stetsons and go into “Stampede mode.”

Not much work gets done as cowboys, Indian princesses, ferris wheels and pancake breakfasts take hold of the city.

From its humble beginnings in 1912 to the ongoing controversy over chuckwagon races, the Calgary Exhibition & Stampede continues to be Canada’s annual salute to the good old days of the Wild West.”

Doug Wilson

Williams Lake