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Photos: St’a7mes School ceremony welcomes start of annual herring run

The event marks the beginning of Tem Lhawt’ (herring run) in Átl'ḵa7tsem/Howe Sound.

St’a7mes School Sḵwx̱wú7mesh herring welcome was held at the  St'a7mes village and Totem Hall on March 9.

The event marks the beginning of Tem Lhawt’ (the herring run) in Átl'ḵa7tsem/Howe Sound.

There was singing, drumming and the stringing together of hemlock boughs. 

The students' hemlock and cedar boughs were put into the mouth of the sound as part of the welcome.

"As herring make their seasonal return, so too do the birds, sea lions and whales. It is a time that is not quite spring but not quite winter felt in the first warm rays of sun on bare skin. Take a moment and go down by the shore to listen," said Kieran Brownie, who photographed this event and many other Sḵwx̱wú7mesh and St’a7mes events.

"Everyone is singing in celebration," Brownie said.

Also at the ceremony, conservationist John Buchanan, who has done a lot of herring conservation work, was blanketed in recognition of his work with the school "that has led us up to where we are at now in our relationship with the herring and the Sound," reads the summary of the event posted to the school's website

Learn more about herring and its importance to Sḵwx̱wú7mesh in this Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Sníchim (Squamish laguage) video.

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