Minggu, 19 Februari 2012


High-tech counting devices showed that regional parks and trails attracted visitors in record numbers last year.
Led by the Galloping Goose Trail with 1,660,594 visits, the Capital Regional District's outdoor offerings were used 5.45 million times in 2011 - up by 4.6 per cent over 2010. All told, CRD Regional Parks is responsible for 13,000 hectares contained in 33 parks and trail systems spread across southern Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands.
The rest of the top five areas, after the Galloping Goose, are Elk/Beaver Lake (1,229,256 visits), Lochside Trail (1,023,271 visits), Thetis Lake (405,690 visits) and Island View Beach (325,768).
While the CRD has been monitoring park and trail use the past 11 years, new technology has been making the process easier and more efficient since an equipment upgrade in 2009-10, said Janette Loveys, manager of park operations for the CRD.
There are currently 36 traffic counters and 28 counters on trails and in parks.
"We are actually generating a full 12 months of really good data," Loveys said. "It helps with so many things."
She said the counters on trails and in parks use infrared beams to count passersby.
"We know, too, if there's equestrian use or mountainbiking use because we can tell by how the infrared beam is being broken.
A good counting system makes a big difference to parks staff, Loveys said.
"We get to understand trends, when people are in parks and on trails."
It also helps to deal with large-scale park-management issues, she said.
"We actually have been able to pull the numbers we get into our operational planning. We're really thankful for the tools we have."
Resistance is not the only avenue to social change, according to cultural anthropologist Eben Kirksey.
In the Indonesian province of West Papua, where he has done considerable research, collaboration is the key to bringing about desired transformation, Kirksey said.
Joining with "unlikely allies" such as foreign governments or big corporations has served the West Papuans well, he said.
Kirksey, who works at City University of New York, is coming to Victoria as a guest of the Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives and the Pacific Peoples' Partnership.
"Eben has been privy to witness the extraordinary history and struggles of the indigenous Papuan peoples," Partnership executive director April Ingham said in a statement. "In addition to his own experiences, he has gathered firsthand accounts of people from all walks of life."
Kirksey is giving two public presentations Monday, the first at the University of Victoria, where the Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives is based. He will be in room D101 in the MacLaurin Building at 12: 30 p.m. speaking about his soon-to-be-released book Freedom in Entangled Worlds: West Papua and the Architecture of Global Power.
The talk is part of the centre's free Lunch and Learn Series.
At 7 p.m., Kirksey will be at the Alcheringa Gallery (665 Fort St.) talking about how the West Papuans have maintained a sense of hope despite occupation and violence.
Admission for the evening talk is by donation, with proceeds going to the Pacific Peoples' Partnership, whose objectives include promoting understanding of Pacific Islands inhabitants and helping them to establish links with Canada's First Nations groups.
The Victoria Hospitals Foundation is closing in on its goal of raising $595,000 to help purchase 94 vitalsigns monitors for the Patient Care Centre at Royal Jubilee Hospital.
Eighty per cent of the money has been raised.
The monitors will help with the care given to thousands of cardiac and general-surgery patients every year. The units can display such information as blood pressure, respiratory rate and pulse, as well as heart activity measured by an electrocardiogram. They also provide wireless-communication alerts to healthcare workers when a patient's vital signs change.
The patient-care centre opened last March. Donate to the Victoria Hospitals Foundation at victoriahf.ca or phone 250-519-1750.
North Saanich Middle School continues to host its third annual Holocaust and Human Rights Museum this week, with 6 to 8 p.m. openings from Monday through Thursday.
This year's museum, set up inside the 10475 McDonald Park Rd. school, happens to be in place just weeks after vandalism at Victoria's Emanu-El Jewish Cemetery raised concerns about racism and anti-Semitism.
Past versions of the museum have been widely praised. This year's effort involves nearly 250 students and six teachers - about twice as many people as in 2011 - and features another collection of insightful, well-researched exhibits that tell the story of the Holocaust and examine human-rights issues.
From 60 to 70 people have visited the museum each night it has been open.
A book is being put together to chronicle the museum's first year.
Book a tour online at northsaanich.sd63.bc.ca. Admission is by donation.

Read more: http://www.timescolonist.com/life/Region+parks+attract+record+numbers/6177198/story.html#ixzz1mtZjUFis

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