June 27, 2006

Original Stream of Dreams Comes Down

The original Stream of Dreams mural at the corner of Kingsway and Edmonds in Burnaby was dismantled today. The southeast Burnaby landmark was removed after six years to make way for a new municipal library, and a commercial/residential complex. A total of 47 volunteers -- Byrne Creek Streamkeepers, Stream of Dreams Murals Society members, Horizontes Explorers, Burnaby City staff and Burnaby Firefighters -- pitched in to get nearly 3,000 painted wooden Dreamfish off the fence in about five hours!

You can read the press release for more information about the event, and also check out the Stream of Dreams Society link above.

We untwisted the metal ties holding the fish to the chain-link fence, or cut them, and then pulled the ties out of the fish. Then the Dreamfish were sorted by condition and size, because we hope to give them new homes on other fences in the Byrne Creek watershed.

Here are some photos of the bittersweet event.

A line of volunteers removing Dreamfish.

Moving further down the fence.

The Horizontes Explorers pitch in.

Working around the shrubbery :-).

Boxes fill with beautiful Dreamfish, some still in excellent condition after six years.

Approaching the end of the fence!

Burnaby firefighters put on a much-appreciated BBQ. Thanks!

Pulling metal ties and sorting Dreamfish.

My wife Yumi looks good to go another couple of hours :-).

I'm dazed and amazed it's all over.

It was a wonderul group effort. The many hands made short work of the job. Thanks to everyone! Let's get these Dreamfish restored and back up on other fences in the watershed soon...

Posted by Paul at 08:42 PM

June 26, 2006

Huge Props at Nikkei Place Movie Shoot

I ran across these huge props at Nikkei Place today -- the Japanese cultural centre was closed for a movie shoot. It was an interesting collection of items: a pair of huge statues of knights in armor, a large head evoking Southeast Asia, several tall triangular pillars, and a raptor-like dinosaur.

An aerial view from my Mom's condo.

These knights were about 3-4 meters tall.


Posted by Paul at 03:42 PM

June 25, 2006

Ambling Lonsdale Quay

Yumi and I ambled around the Lonsdale Quay area in North Vancouver today. It was a gorgeous, hot, sunny day.

The quay from the Burrard pier.

The Seabus heading to downtown Vancouver and the MPV Constitution, billed as the only authentic paddlewheeler in Vancouver.

A flotilla of Cates tugs.

A remnant of the Burrard Shipyard with new tower rising in the background.

Posted by Paul at 04:06 PM

June 23, 2006

Byrne Creek Bugs 'n Boulders

A stroll in Byrne Creek ravine today turned up lots of beasties, boulders and flowers. A few photos...





Posted by Paul at 11:02 PM

June 19, 2006

Fish Fly Off Fence

Stream of Dreams Murals Society
Byrne Creek Streamkeepers



For Immediate Release--June 19, 2006

Landmark Stream of Dreams Mural Departs Kingsway and Edmonds

On June 27, a Burnaby icon will disappear when volunteers remove 3,000 Dreamfish that make up the original Stream of Dreams mural at Kingsway and Edmonds. Thousands of schoolchildren and community volunteers, with assistance from City staff, created the beloved artwork for Rivers Day 2000 to honor 5,000 fish and other animals killed in nearby Byrne Creek in 1998 after a toxin was dumped down a storm drain. The mural was mounted on a City-owned chain-link fence around a vacant development site, where it became a cherished symbol of community spirit and environmental awareness that forged new partnerships in the struggling Edmonds neighborhood.

That original mural spawned a hugely successful award-winning program of watershed education and community art that has involved nearly 40,000 participants and is approaching its 100th mural. Painted wooden Dreamfish now swim on schoolyard fences throughout the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, and the BC interior, reminding communities of the importance of clean water and how storm drain systems are connected to local streams. Recently, Dreamfish migrated to Ontario, and cities in Alberta and several U.S. states are also interested in the program.

Byrne Creek Streamkeepers, the Stream of Dreams Murals Society, the local community, and the City of Burnaby will start removing the Dreamfish at 4:00 pm on June 27, working through the evening until the job is done. As many Dreamfish as possible will be saved for installation in new locations--??some are still in good condition, some require refurbishment, and a few will be lovingly retired.

Streamkeepers and the murals society will have information booths set up, and encourage the public to pitch in and also suggest new locations for the Dreamfish.

The City of Burnaby and the developer, Bosa Properties, have acknowledged the neighbourhood?s strong attachment to the founding Stream of Dreams mural, and are including watershed and salmon public art elements in the new residential and commercial complex that will be built on the site.

We are thankful that these original Dreamfish have already lasted years longer than a typical salmon life cycle. We are amazed at their symbolic power and influence, and we invite you to share in commemorating their migration to new waters.


For questions regarding this press release please contact:

Joan Carne: tobydog2000@shaw.ca
Co-Founder, Stream of Dreams Murals Society
Chair, Byrne Creek Streamkeepers

Paul Cipywnyk: paul@cipywnyk.com
President, Stream of Dreams Murals Society
Volunteer, Byrne Creek Streamkeepers


Posted by Paul at 02:19 PM

Trying New pH Kits in Byrne Creek

Yumi and I received new pH kits from Byrne Creek Streamkeeper Brian yesterday, and we tried them out on our ravine walk by the creek today. We got a reading of 7.5 with the Hach kit from Dynamic Aqua-Supply, and also 7.5 with a lo-Ion paper kit, so at least the results were consistent.


Posted by Paul at 02:11 PM

June 15, 2006

Lamprey Spawn in Byrne Creek

Yumi and I spotted nine lamprey in Byrne Creek today, and most appeared to be paired off and spawning.

This appeared to be a threesome :-).

We also saw lots of caddisfly larva -- they look so cool encased in woody debris and sand.


Posted by Paul at 05:52 PM

June 14, 2006

Coleman Canoe Arrives

We ordered a Coleman Ram-X 15.5 foot canoe about a month ago from Canadian Tire and it finally arrived today. We got a great price -- it was $200 off. Now I just hope we have some time to use it this summer!

It was a bit of an adventure getting it home. I had expected it to be in a box "with some assembly required," however we got a floor model that was ready to hit the water. We had ropes and bungy cords and got it home OK, but we'll have to figure out a more efficient way of strapping it onto the roof rack.

We have only one weekend free this month, and I'm raring to get up to Birkenhead Lake or another interior lake.


Posted by Paul at 06:10 PM

June 11, 2006

Burnaby Environment Awards 2006

A few weeks ago we got a call from the City of Burnaby that Yumi and I had won an Environment Award for Community Stewardship for our volunteer work with the Byrne Creek Streamkeepers. It took awhile for the idea to sink in -- while we've put our share of hours into the group, there are other members who are at least as deserving, if not more so. Ironically, I think what put us in the running was media exposure the two of us got after the devastating fish kill in the creek in late February this year when someone poured a toxin down a storm drain.

Today we received the award from the city's Environment Committee at a nice open-air luncheon at the city art gallery at Deer Lake, along with several other recipients, including an Environmental Star award for youth for another Byrne Creek Streamkeeper, Eleanor King.

Since we began streamkeeping about four years ago, we have made wonderful friends and learned so much.

Yumi, me, my Mom, and her husband Barry.

Posted by Paul at 08:13 PM