EDMONTON TOURIST: ᐄᓃᐤ(ÎNÎW) River Lot 11∞

42677112_10161082337226337_2567440288867942400_n

I wanted to visit Queen Elizabeth Park for a while now that the Walterdale Bridge is finished along with the surrounding landscape. The path below the bridge is now open on the Northside of the river and it leads to Irene Parlby Park. I haven’t had a chance to explore that trail yet but I did get to Queen Elizabeth Park with my trusty pal Cap.

My family has a long history with this park, from swimming in the outdoor pool, picnics and picking lilacs. I am sad to report the lilac shrubs are no longer at the entrance to the east side of the park. However, the changes that were created to the west side of the park is beautiful.

I drove north towards the river on Queen Elizabeth Road and turned left into the west side of the park. The new parking lot and entrance are all shiny and new.

42711066_10161082337266337_2077916842935975936_n

I parked next to the shelter and began exploring. I think the location of the shelter is where the old Queen Elizabeth Pool Building used to be. Directly to the west is a marker signifying the location of the old pool. I hope the City continues to tell a complete story of City history. Here is a lovely blend of Treaty 6 Nations art and a brief history and the story of the pool. Interesting fact, there were two moose held captive here for two years with the intention of expanding into a zoo. Happily, they were released.

42682812_10161082334321337_7553246851021930496_n

Cap and I strolled the circular path that led to the different art installations.

42792846_10161082336866337_7657887720529723392_n

My first stop was mamohkamatowin (Helping each other). Lovely intricate mosaics depicting various symbols including the beaver, raven and people, all working together to build a community. 42665030_10161082336421337_1631326757678219264_n

A few steps later is the valley lookout.

42727205_10161082336556337_1109136168449998848_n

My city is quickly changing, I almost don’t recognize the skyline. Continuing on, I came to mikikwan. This is a hide scraper for the past, present and future.

42654160_10161082335251337_6889512371853721600_n

I stood in front of Preparing to Cross the Sacred River for a long time. I thought the birds were geese but after learning about this installation I learned they were magpies. They are deferential to both petroglyphs and beadwork. I was quite mesmerized.

42699646_10161082335846337_5697456821757804544_n

Pehonan is a storytelling amphitheatre. The highest seat at the top references the deep past. Its the farthest from reach when you are at the base, but when you are sitting at the top, you have the greatest field of vision with the greatest perspective. When you are closest to the future but not able to see so far into the distance.

42558970_10161082335446337_4880265265637490688_n

Iskotew is fire. It is written in the Cree language.

42681048_10161082335376337_8485743328258686976_n

Finally, I saw Reign. Fox and Hare with hadrosaurs traversing the valley floor.

42776306_10161082335046337_8418338317673693184_n

Each of these installations had benches nearby to give a person time to ponder and think about what is before them. I thought about the history on this land long before I began visiting with my family. It is called ᐄᓃᐤ(ÎNÎW) River Lot 11∞. Reading one of the cairns indicate this was the homestead of Métis farmer Joseph McDonald. His actual home has been moved to Fort Edmonton Park and is located next to the North West Mounted Police building. During the Treaty 6 recognition, I spoke with McDonald’s great-granddaughter.  She said he wasn’t Métis but his children were because he had married a Cree woman, her great-grandmother. He was Scottish and that meant his children were ‘half-breeds’ not Métis. Of course, that all has changed and now her family is referred to as Métis. We spoke for a while and learned about the script and how her grandmother was a medicine woman. To honour that, the Fort plants medicinal plants in the garden outside the home. She was an interesting storyteller and what lovely validation and recognition for her family.

42789186_10161082336941337_5482520268670763008_n

Captain and I then crossed the busy road to see if there were any other changes to Queen Elizabeth Park. I was happy to see my bench is still in its same spot. I hadn’t been able to sit on since the construction began years ago. I sat for a while and noticed the view is more obscure that is was the last time I sat in this spot.

42703952_10161082334476337_431259586041741312_n

The view of the Rossdale plant was more open and the river is now obscure but it’s still lovely. In the past, I have sat in this spot to read, talk with friends or just to think. I am incredibly happy to my park back.

4 thoughts on “EDMONTON TOURIST: ᐄᓃᐤ(ÎNÎW) River Lot 11∞

  1. Thanks for sharing! I’ve been eagerly anticipating the completion of this area for some time. My travels down the hill always included a quick glance to see how the progress was going. When the fences finally came down my heart slipped a beat! I look forward to exploring soon. 🤗

  2. Excellent and informative blog. I will have to check this out. I especially want to see the art and artifacts on display.
    The photos are lovely they really bring out the beauty of the area.

Keep the conversation going!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s