Plaques share park’s history

Dear Editor:

During the wind storms of 2007 and 2008 over 100 magnificent trees were up rooted and decimated  much of Skaha Lake  Park  so much so that parts of the Skaha Lake Park resembled pictures one has seen of the destruction of parts  of Europe during World War II.

At that time a clarion call was put out to the citizens of Penticton to come to the financial aid of the City to assist in the purchase of new trees to reforest the park.

Many of us who get great enjoyment from the park did just that and donated amounts from $100 to $500. Following the reforestation, a plaque was erected listing the donors. A check of that plaque reveals some interesting information about our “gem of a park.” The most interesting information is not who gave to the well being of the park, but who did not.

The plaque is still there for anyone to read but you will notice that not one serving member of the present city council donated a dime to the very worthwhile endeavour…. interesting  in that they didn’t care about the beauty of the park then and obviously by their short-sighted leasing out of a sizable portion of a a very lovely and tranquil part of the park don’t care about it now.

One of the more interesting facts reported on that plaque is  I quote: “In the 1940’s Penticton’s Reeve  (mayor) and council passed a motion to preserve as park land what was then called Pine Tree Park.”

What a far thinking mayor and council. One wonders what became of that motion — was it rescinded? From this plaque we learn that Skaha Park was bequeathed to us  by a concerned council and that the fact that it exists today is thanks to a forward thinking council.

And here we are today with the present stewards of the park willing to lease much of it out for a few dollars. By what  inherent right do they think that this is what the council of the 1940s would allow this to transpire.

One can hear loudly the refrain  “If ye break faith with us who die we shall not sleep.”

Kerry Baxter

Penticton