Campaigning west coast style means travelling by canoe to Protection Island for a meet some candidates night at Beacon House. I’m thinking this has got to be a first for elections in Nanaimo. We got permission from a Snuneymuxw Council member and we departed from the beach on Snuneymuxw territory. The weather cooperated and it was a smooth paddle to Protection.
The event was a great evening with lots of questions, conversations and suggestions. The event started with Tyler Brown, Erin Hemmens, Ben Geselbrecht and myself introducing ourselves and little bit about who we were and our experience. Then each candidate had a few minutes to outline their platforms. After that we had the better part of an hour answering questions about issues that were important to the residents.
Culture and arts was one of those issues and there were questions about the Conference Centre. Of interesting note was the council chambers. We are presently waiting for a 300 seat rehearsal hall to be built as part of the Port Theatre. Even with that we need more venues for artists to perform. The council chambers at the VICC could be one of those venues. I’m thinking that when the VICC was built the idea what that the Shaw Auditorium would be used for culture and arts events. However Council took over the venue and turned it into council chambers. I think for not a lot of money we could make the council seats portable and then we would have another venue for arts groups that seats 200 people complete with streaming capabilities.