Tracey Kutschker, director/curator at the Salmon Arm Art Gallery, describes details of the gallery’s Cultural Mapping Research Project, which features 18 maps created about feeling a sense of belonging while navigating Salmon Arm’s downtown. The exhibition continues through to Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022. (File photo)

Tracey Kutschker, director/curator at the Salmon Arm Art Gallery, describes details of the gallery’s Cultural Mapping Research Project, which features 18 maps created about feeling a sense of belonging while navigating Salmon Arm’s downtown. The exhibition continues through to Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022. (File photo)

Year in Review: The Observer looks back at headlines from October 2022

  • Dec. 26, 2022 10:00 a.m.

The Salmon Arm Observer looks back at the stories that made headlines in 2022.

October

• While nowhere near rivalling the crowds at the 5-Band Salute to the Sockeye at Tsútswecw Provincial Park, the people who gathered for the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in Salmon Arm demonstrated their heart and commitment. About 150, many clad in orange shirts, stood at the corner outside the Salmon Arm Arts Centre on Sept. 30. Louis Thomas, Knowledge Keeper and Neskonlith councillor, spoke both in Secwepemetscin and English, saying when his people came to the region long ago they were healthy, vibrant people with their own government, with everything they needed and where they all got along together. He thinks, for truth and reconciliation to work, it has to go both ways. People have to learn from each other, get to know each other. “I strongly believe that myself. I’ve been on the path of truth and reconciliation for the past 40 years. “
• Salmon Arm council received good news regarding ambulances and paramedics recently. A on-call ambulance in Salmon Arm will be converted to a fully staffed 24/7 ambulance. The conversion will mean eight new permanent full-time positions in the community, according to a Sept. 14 letter to council from BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS).
Salmon Arm’s future holds roundabouts, at least three of them. The city was hiring an engineering firm to design three roundabouts, each of them priced at $70,000. At council’s Sept. 22 meeting, city staff requested changes to the 2022 to 2026 Financial Plan, changes which replaced a previously planned roundabout with another, and evened out the cost for all three. One of them was at the intersection of Shuswap Street and 10th Avenue SE. A second roundabout planned would sit at the intersection of 10th Street and 5th Avenue SW, near Kal Tire and Bowers Funeral Home. A third would be at the intersection of 11th Avenue and 30th Street NE, near Setters Neighbourhood Pub and McDonald’s restaurant.
• A Salmon Arm daycare and its parent community were thrilled to be part of the province’s $10-a-day program. This month, 36 spaces at Shuswap Day Care have transitioned to the program, reducing the average cost of full-time childcare from around $1,000 a month to $200 a month per child. “I am ecstatic to communicate with our families that we were successful in our application to become a $10-a-day childcare facility,” commented Shuswap Day Care manager Karen Bubola in an Oct. 3 media release by the B.C. Ministry of Education and Child Care. “I have been in the field for over 30 years and have advocated for financial support for families seeking child care and for the Early Childhood Educators to make a fair wage for the valuable and important work we do. The $10-a-day financial support from the government will be able to assist our society in addressing both of these concerns.”
It wasn’t a particular issue, but city council’s response to the issues that influenced Salmon Arm voters at the ballot box. This was one of Mayor Alan Harrison’s takeaways from the results of the Oct. 15 municipal election that saw all incumbent candidates voted back into office. “I think the people in Salmon Arm, they didn’t really select candidates based on an issue or an item or a promise,” said Harrison in his election speech, delivered to supporters gathered after polls closed on Oct. 15 at the Salmon Arm Curling Centre. Preliminary numbers showed Harrison securing a second term as mayor by a landslide, defeating newcomer Luke Norrie and former mayor Nancy Cooper. Harrison tallied 3,213 votes or 69.1 per cent of votes cast, versus 747 votes (16.1 per cent) for Norrie and 675 votes (14.5 per cent) for Cooper. Of the 11 people competing for one of the six councillor positions, incumbents Debbie Cannon, Kevin Flynn, Tim Lavery, Sylvia Lindgren and Louise Wallace Richmond were re-elected, with newcomer David Gonella joining council.
• The goal is pretty simple, pretty straightforward: make Salmon Arm a safe and comfortable place for everyone. When entering “A Place to Belong” exhibition at the Salmon Arm Art Gallery, you’ll see a large, brightly coloured quilt on one wall, along with several smaller framed creations on adjacent walls. The smaller pieces are part of a Cultural Mapping Research Project. Director/curator Tracey Kutschker explained that when it was decided to do an arts-based PRIDE Project designed to bring awareness and acceptance, a question arose. “What place are we starting from?” One repeated finding was places that allowed for creative self-expression were deemed safe places. A couple of examples were Shuswap Theatre and the Roots and Blues festival. “Where people feel free to do and then free to be themselves. And some places that might feel like they should be a creative space are not a safe space because they don’t allow for that open self-expression,” Kutschker explained.

newsroom@saobserver.net
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