Tour nature’s garden to celebrate park’s birthday

Camas Day made special with artists, walks, plants and cake

Margaret Lidkea

Margaret Lidkea

Christine van Reeuwyk

Oak Bay News

Victor Lotto and his Wheaten terrier Barney traverse 20 minutes into Uplands Park almost daily for exercise and inspiration.

“We visit there every morning and I have a number of nice spots I like to paint,” says the well-known Oak Bay artist.

He’ll be among those painting in the park for a party this weekend as Uplands Park celebrates 70 years on Camas Day.

“I’m sure they’re going to get a very good turnout of painters,” Lotto said of the event organized by Friends of Uplands Park. “I attended last year for Camas Day, despite the inclement weather there was a very good turnout.”

Festivities launch at noon on Sunday with a welcome by Oak Bay council, Friends of Uplands Park and Oak Bay Parks, Recreation and Culture.

“I’m hoping there won’t be any rain and I’ll find a spot and set up my easel. I have to start a little earlier than that to ensure I have the right light,” Lotto said. “I think they’ll have a very good turnout. I think there will be a good sprinkling of painters that can add a little extra flavour on the day.”

A driving force behind the Friends of Uplands Park, Margaret Lidkea likewise turned 70 this March. She spent this week cleaning out her craft closet in anticipation of visitor participation in creating arts in the park alongside the plein air painters.

“We’re going to have some art supplies so people can create their own,” Lidkea said.

From those who come to propose marriage to those who were inspired to go on and do more habitat restoration work, “we’re celebrating all the people who have been inspired here,” Lidkea said. “A lot of people have scampered in these fields and on the rocks.”

During the day Matt Fairbarns, Wylie Thomas and Kathleen Matthews lead native plant tours every half hour while a celtic harp provides background music.

“We celebrate the flowers by having nature walks through nature’s garden. We’ll have some free nature plants to give out,” Lidkea said.

Kevin Webber will lead Glenlyon Norfolk students, Oak Bay High Environment Club and others pulling invasive plants that day. They’re among the groups with years of experience restoring the Garry oak meadows.

“This park is so inspirational this time of year in part because of long-serving volunteers,” Lidkea said, adding it wouldn’t be so stunning with the copious amounts of Scotch broom pulled over the years. “I would really like to honour the kids, especially the Guides.”

Bowker Creek Initiative will bring the interactive water table and marine and bird experts, Jacques Sirois and Geoffrey Newell will be on hand at Cattle Point. Donations for the free event from Hide + Seek Coffee, Cobs Bakery and Thrifty Foods include birthday cake and refreshments.

Camas Day, celebrating 70 years of the park, is May 1 from noon to 4 p.m. near the Beach Drive entrance to Cattle Point.

Visit friendsofuplandspark.org to learn more.

 

 

 

Just Posted

VicPd are asking for the public’s help in finding Camper, a lost pit bull who ran away after their owner’s van was reportedly attacked by a man with a hammer on June 12. (Courtesy of VicPD)
Edmonton man reportedly smashes van’s windows with hammer while woman and her dog inside

VicPD are asking for help to find Camper, the woman’s dog who ran away during the Friday incident

A temporary urgent and primary care centre will open in Esquimalt this week, offering residents more health care options in their own community. (Black Press Media file)
Esquimalt’s temporary urgent and primary care centre to open Monday

The Esquimalt Health Unit will house the temporary site, permanent location opening in December

A client and a staff member embark on an art project at Oak Bay United Church. (Christine van Reewyk/News Staff)
VIDEO: Oak Bay group of adults with developmental disabilities promotes community inclusivity

Victoria Community Connections moved to Oak Bay late last year

Red arrow shows the existing warehouse that is home to a variety of specialized equipment used by the Capital Region Emergency Services Telecommunications (CREST). The service provider is looking for a new home that will protect the equipment in the event of an earthquake or other natural disaster. (Google Maps)
CREST telecoms look to find a post-seismic facility in Greater Victoria

The move will better protect equipment vital to its 50 emergency service clients across the CRD

(Black Press Media file photo)
FRESH AND LOCAL: Greater Victoria farm markets ready to greet shoppers

A list of markets on the go this spring and summer, right into fall

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

Most Read