This year, the Indigenous Education Department has started work on two traditional Cottonwood dugout canoes. Frank Marchand is our guide and master carver for this project, and he combines the knowledge and skills to create the two canoes with stories and an amazing sense of humour.
mat way̓ kʷu t̓ixʷlm
(maybe we are different)
nax̌m̓ɬ kʷu yʕayʕát papút
(but we are all the same)
All work (with the exception of a little bit of chainsaw work) is completed by hand using the adze you can see below. Getting these logs into the carving area was a challenge as the combined weight of the logs was 16 000 lbs.
Although the carving site is at Mount Boucherie Secondary School, all of the carving is being completed by Central Okanagan Public School students from across the district. The students have some inventive ways to chip away at the log.
These students take pride in the work they do and have made some real connections with the process and each other.