Friday, Oct. 20, 2023- 840 days, 1 protest, 15 photos

🌦️ High 16C

Good morning!

About a week ago, I looked out my window and saw something weird: a great big evergreen tree, stuck on top of a nearly-completed apartment building across the street.

After a Google search (“Why is there a tree on top of a construction site”), I can tell you that it’s part of an ancient construction tradition called topping out. The tree is mounted once the last cross-beam or structural element of a building is raised, signalling that construction has reached its highest point. Originally, the Norse tradition was intended to appease nature spirits displaced during construction and thought to bring good luck to the building’s future residents.

In tomorrow’s members' edition, Tyler shares some critical feedback to our Mission Greenway article and writes about how stories can go wrong. You can be an Insider member here.

– Grace

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A protest 840 days in the making

The wind was blowing, as it always does, as dozens of Lytton residents protested the delays that have left the village with no rebuilt structures more than two years after it burned down.

Led by Maya Chang and chanting slogans, residents carried an array of signs stressing their desire to return to their village. The messages were clear: “We need our homes,” “Stop the delays,” and “We want to go home.” Some wore handmade cardboard signs bearing the number 840—the number of days since the 2021 fire that destroyed the village.

Although politicians have repeatedly promised that rebuilding will start soon, it has yet to happen. Residents are facing another winter where it appears unlikely that any new construction will begin. They’re also facing increasing worries over potentially large additional archaeological costs.

Through the media, residents have repeatedly sounded the alarm about a perceived lack of urgency to resolve the various barriers slowing the recovery. But Wednesday’s protest was the first time they gathered in numbers to demonstrate.


Need to know

🎹 An award-winning musician is offering two free jazz piano workshops in Langley [Langley Advance Times]

💬 A lack of speech language pathologists in BC is causing kids who need their help to fall behind [The Tyee]

🔥 A fire at a trailer in a homeless encampment in Chilliwack is under investigation [Chilliwack Progress]

📄 An Abbotsford MP’s bill to remove mental health provisions from MAID legislation failed [Abbotsford News]

➡️ Major failures in the MCFD district where a boy in care died were revealed in an audit [The Tyee]

👉️ A senior “neighbourhood icon” in Aldergrove died last weekend [Langley Advance Times]

➡️ A Chilliwack resident wants Fraser Health to protect people from the risks of radon after her battle with lung cancer [Chilliwack Progress]

🧑‍🤝‍🧑 Protests against SOGI resources continue in Abbotsford [Abbotsford News]

👩‍⚖️ The man accused of killing a BC gangster is expected to appear in court next month [Vancouver Sun]

🛣️ Three options to repair a rough stretch of historic Old Yale Road in Langley will be considered by council [Langley Advance Times]

🚘️ A two-car crash on Tretheway Street in Abbotsford on Thursday morning resulted in no serious injuries [Abbotsford News]

➡️ The Abbotsford School District is updating its trustee code of conduct [Abbotsford News]

📸 CURRENT CAM: Congrats to Gerry, who was the first to guess Wednesday’s Current Cam photo’s location as the underside of the Abbotsford Entertainment Centre’s electronic sign.

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The Agenda

Energy monitors help users determine how much electricity their appliances are using. 📷️ FVRL

Library loaning energy and air quality devices

The Fraser Valley Regional Library has started loaning out air quality monitoring kits and energy meters.

The energy meters are devices that test home appliances to determine how much electricity they use to operate. Users can then use that information to reduce costs and monitor their household carbon emissions.

Air quality monitoring kits, on the other hand, will let borrowers determine the amount of carbon dioxide, small particulate matter, formaldehyde, and organic compounds in the air in their homes. FVRL also loans out radon detectors.

Community journalism needs the entire community for it to succeed.

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Celebrate Halloween with Brewhalla Cloverdale 🎃

On October 28, come dressed as you aren't for Brewhalla Cloverdale at the Cloverdale Agriplex, presented by The Property Twins. Sample a variety of craft beverages - beers, ciders, wines, spirits, cocktails, non-alcoholic beverages - while dancing to live music and snacking at the food trucks. See full lineup here!

💾 Flashback Fridays

Two hikers on top of Vedder Mountain. 📷️ Royal BC Museum Archive

At some point in the early 1920s, Oscar Humphreys and a friend of his clambered up Vedder Mountain. They shot this photo, which shows part of the “Sumas Valley Reclamation project”—or the draining of Sumas Lake—on the valley floor below them. We think the mountain in the distance is Chilliwack Mountain. Tell us what you think.

🗓 Things to do

Concert: The Maybelles will play four shows featuring hits of the ’60s and ’70s at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre this weekend, from Friday to Monday. Tickets online.

Free berry class: The Great Blue Heron Nature Reserve is hosting a free community event on wild berries and the insects that eat them with scientists from the Agassiz Research and Development Centre on Saturday, Oct. 21. Details online.

Haunted house: Mission’s Nightmare Haunted House, run by the Mission Firefighter’s Charitable Society, will open for the season starting tonight and running until Oct. 29. Details online.

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Catch up

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Grace Giesbrecht

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