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Community partnership creates landmark park in Bonshaw

by pmnationtalk on July 14, 201761 Views

Press Release

July 14, 2017

An investment in public lands and a commitment to working with a wide range of users has yielded Bonshaw Hills Provincial Park.

Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Minister Paula Biggar, Economic Development and Tourism Minister Heath MacDonald, and Lennox Island First Nation Chief Matilda Ramjattan joined Bonshaw Hills Public Lands Committee members today to officially open the new 693-acre day-use park and more than 20 kilometres of trails.

“We as a government are committed to working with communities,” Minister Biggar said. “In the case of Bonshaw, a multi-year engagement with area residents and interested groups helped to ensure that these precious public lands are preserved as a valuable natural area and a place for outdoor recreation for generations of Islanders and visitors.”

The park’s main trail was named Ji’ka’we’katik (pronounced Jih Ga Way Ga Dig) to honor the traditions and history of Prince Edward Island’s First Nations. Ji’ka’we’katik means “the place where bass are plentiful” in Mi’kmaq.

“The Indigenous Mi’kmaq have been on this island for 12,000 years and have always had an inherently close connection with the land and water,” Chief Ramjattan said. “It is beautiful areas such as this that remind us of where we come from and where we should be.”

Bonshaw Hills Provincial Park has grown to 693 acres in recent years, including the addition of more than 480 acres of land incorporated into the park through the efforts of the Bonshaw Hills Public Lands Committee. The committee has been instrumental in the development of the park and construction of many kilometres of new trails.

An accessible, natural play playground has been developed at the park, along with solar-powered sanitation facilities and expanded parking at the north and south trail entries.

“Bonshaw Hills Provincial Park has already established itself as a very popular attraction for visitors and Islanders alike,” Minister MacDonald said. “The trails and play area – combined with the natural beauty of the West River – are being enjoyed by people of all ages, and those features make the park an ideal venue to promote healthy lifestyles.”

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