You’re invited to celebrate the birthday of BC’s new fossil emblem at the Courtenay & District Museum!
The Comox Valley’s elasmosaur, from the Traditional Territory of K’ómoks First Nation, is now British Columbia’s official fossil emblem and joins other provincial symbols: Pacific Dogwood, Stellar’s Jay, Spirit Bear, Pacific Salmon, Western Red Cedar, and Jade.
Starting in the fall of 2018, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources, assisted by the British Columbia Palaeontological Alliance, asked the public to vote for one of seven fossils, from around the province, put forward to become BC’s official fossil emblem. The Puntledge elasmosaur, discovered by Michael Trask on the Puntledge River in 1988 received 48% of the public’s vote.
The efforts of many over the years, along with further strong support from Comox-Courtenay MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard, and The Honourable MLA Lana Popham, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport, took the vote over the finishing line on October 25, 2023.
On October 25, the BC Legislature amended the Provincial Symbols and Honours Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 380, to add the following section: “Fossil Emblem: 6.4 The fossil known taxonomically as Elasmosauridae and commonly known as the elasmosaurid marine reptile is the fossil emblem of British Columbia.”
Over the coming year, the Courtenay and District Museum, community, and province will celebrate this emblem in several ways and the museum team will let everyone know about these as they unfold.
Now, on Saturday November 25, from 11am-2pm, with this new designation, there is even more reason to celebrate the elasmosaur’s 80,000,035th annual discovery birthday. Thank you to MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard for giving a special welcome at 12:30 pm.
This event is fun for all ages. With some help from adults, kids can craft, wear, and take home their own birthday hat. Attendees will also be given a commemorative postcard certificate that they can sign and keep, as well as a special custom button to celebrate the event. Please join the museum team and volunteers for door prizes, birthday decorations, cake and cupcakes, juice, and a visit from the museum mascot.
Don’t miss this exciting event. Courtenay Museum is located downtown at 207 4th St.
Admission is by donation. For more info call 250 334 0686 ext. 2