Today we have concerning news for the resuscitation of First Nations languages. And unrelated, we have good news if you like walking around dressed as your favourite superhero.
Today’s approx. read time: 5 minutes
Canadian Heritage halts funding to Victoria Native Friendship Centre
Ron Rice, executive director of the Victoria Native Friendship Centre. Photo: Eric Plummer / Capital Daily
The Victoria Native Friendship Centre (VNFC) faces a funding shortfall for its Urban Indigenous Language Hub after losing its major funder, Canadian Heritage, which provided the multi-language program with $516,600 over the last two years.
The VNFC helps to keep several languages—including Nuučaan̓uɫ, Nihiyaw (Cree—Y dialect and TH dialect), Nedut’en Carrier, Dene, Dakhota, and Anishinaabemowin—active, but the decline in the number of Indigenous language speakers in BC reflects the loss of elder knowledge keepers and disrupted community connections, and has been exacerbated by the enduring colonial legacies of the Sixties Scoop and residential schools.
Indigenous migration to urban areas, driven by systemic issues such as health-care and education disparities has debilitated the cultures—in particular, the languages of Indigenous communities.
Programs such as VNFC's Urban Indigenous Language Hub and the Songhees Nation’s Bringing lək̓ʷəŋiʔnəŋ Language Back to Life program, have been crucial in revitalizing language learners in the CRD. Without adequate funding, the VNFC is worried any progress learners have made in language renewal could be lost. The VNFC said it’s looking at new funding avenues but is concerned its focus on urban Indigenous languages may make it difficult to make up for the lost sponsorship.
Belfry play As Above is cancelled tonight due to illness among cast families.
No trespassing on/near Metchosin’s Bentinck Island, and it could get loud. Canadian Forces are using the demolition range near Rocky Point today and tomorrow. 9am to 4pm.
Lots of boats and military as Canadian Navy will be active at the underwater demolition range at Whirl Bay. 8am to 4pm. Through Sat.
New FanCon coming to Greater Victoria, by way of Langford
Island FanCon logo. Courtesy Island FanCon
The well-received Capital City Comic Con bravely survived the pandemic, was put on pause last year, and won’t be back this year because of funding constraints—but a new entertainment convention is sliding into Langford April 13-14.
Organizers of Island FanCon expect up to 3K entertainment enthusiasts to visit City Centre Park (the entertainment hub next to Starlight Stadium) to rub elbows with celebrities and cosplaying fans of animation, film, books, and other streams of entertainment. “A lot of the cosplayers really take pride in making their own costumes and handcrafting them,” organizer Lonnie Eckardt tells Capital Daily. “It's kind of like the main event of the event,” he says of the popular costume contest. “So I refer to it as our crown jewel.”
The convention is much more than people dressing up as Spiderman or a Star Wars Stormtrooper, Eckardt says. Modelled after Northern FanCon, which Eckardt’s business buddy Norm Coyne has directed for the last nine years in Prince George, Island FanCon intends to promote all things pop culture and provide panels and workshops on how things work behind the scenes in the visual entertainment industry, including acting, writing, and costume design.
Another big attraction is the array of comic and movie stars on hand for photos and autographs. PG’s Northern FanCon has attracted the likes of actors Levar Burton, William Shatner, and Kevin Smith. Beginning next week, Eckardt says Island FanCon will announce a guest each Tue. Tickets go on sale here Friday morning.
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🚁 Freedom of the Town of Sidney Parade with CH148 Cyclone Flypast. [Tomorrow at 10am]
⛷️ Mt. Washington makes the next round in Top Peak contest. [Vote here]
Purported faux dental hygienist accused of fashion show scam
The man accused of pretending to be a licensed dental hygienist in Victoria is alleged to have tried to scam people in Prince Rupert. Emmanuel Osaseri proposed raising money for a fashion show to benefit the North Coast Transitions Society, which says it knows nothing about it. Osaseri is wanted across BC by Saanich Police, for contravening his release conditions. [The Northern View / LJI]
Sea lions ‘farting, belching, roaring and growling’ on Trial Island
And they can be heard in Oak Bay. Credit biologist Jacques Sirois with the flatulence quote. He says the California and Steller sea lions typically break away from the female population to feed on their own for a little while before returning in the spring. He says 100-150 pinnipeds choosing to feast at Trial Island—and others at Race Rocks, opposite Metchosin—is a possible sign herring stocks are recovering. [Times Colonist]
Starbucks pulls birthday cake pops Canada-wide after Island scare
A Courtenay woman found a blue and red pill inside the dessert—cake styled as a lollipop—after her five-year-old son took a bite and said it tasted “funny.” RCMP sent the cake pop and pill to its lab to be analyzed. Starbucks says it’s investigating, along with its supplier. [CHEK]
Victoria cross-country skier at world junior championships
Amelia Wells is in Slovenia to compete in her second U-23 world skiing competition, which takes place this week. After that, she’ll represent Canada at the FIS Cross-Country World Cup in Minnesota as the only Island athlete Nordiq Canada has ever nominated for the competition. [Victoria News]
📕 The Drowsy Chaperone. A musical within a comedy. The Canadian College of the Performing Arts presents this Tony Award-winning Canadian play which blends nostalgia and a contemporary flair. CCPA’s Performance Hall, Oak Bay. Opens Friday. [Info]
🐋 Blue Whales: Return of the Giants. Explore the world of the magnificent blue whale, a species rebounding from the brink of extinction. Fun fact: The average blue whale is 24 metres long, the same as the width of an IMAX screen. IMAX Victoria. Opens Friday. [Tickets]
🎞️ Victoria Film Festival has a full day of films, including 🍁Close to You, and 🍁Short Bursts: Secrets & Lies. Various theatres. Various times. [Info]
South Island restaurants are named among the top spots in Canada. [Tasting Victoria]
Tuesday’s Headlines: Selina Robinson resigns from cabinet post following Palestine comments; Vic rescue team saves lions in Ukraine; and VFF calendar. [Feb. 6]
Victoria Auto Racing Hall of Fame names inductees. [Victoria News]
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