Auld bonnie tartans will be the highlight of this year’s Trail Community in Bloom (CiB) theme.
Starting this spring, CiB will honour the Scottish heritage in Trail by transforming the Gyro Park walkway into “Avenue of the Clans.”
Banners made from the tartan patterns of Trail’s Scottish pioneer families will be hung from pathway light posts.
Originally, CiB planned to feature the banners in a section of East Trail known as “Little Scotland,” however the plan had to be revised after it was determined that the Fortis power poles that line those streets were off limits, said CiB volunteer Jessie Hendrigan.
After the first bridge was built in 1912, Scottish immigrants moved across the water to settle in the down-river end of East Trail.
“The bottom of snake hill to McQuarrie (street) used to be called “Little Scotland,” said Hendrigan.
“All the streets in this area have Scottish names.”
In her research of the area’s Scottish heritage, Hendrigan managed to procure an old phone book from her neighbour.
The decades old book provided Hendrigan surnames that helped her locate local families of Scottish descent.
“I found the names of people who still live here, and they gave me more names,” she said.
“I’ve been busy listening to their stories about the Scottish heritage in Trail.”
For those who don’t know what their family tartan is, Hendrigan will look it up from a reference list of banners that she has compiled.
The banners are available to order now, and can be purchased through CiB at city hall in Trail.
Each banner will cost $200 and will display the family name on the tartan pattern.
CiB secured $2000 in funding from Columbia Power Corporation that will be used to offset the costs of some the banners and the hardware to hang them, said Lana Rodlie, CiB volunteer.
“Avenue of the Clans” grew from a comment that Mayor Dieter Boggs made a few years back.
“We’ve been thinking about it for a few years, after Mayor Boggs saw something similar on his travels in Nova Scotia,” said Rodlie.
This year, CiB is also committed to more development on the White Garden at the far end of Jubilee Park.
In addition, CiB is planning more development at the Shaver’s Bench garden and at the top of Glover Hill in West Trail, said Rodlie.
The Community in Bloom (CiB) budget from the City of Trail is $125,000.
This is the last year that Trail can compete in the international CiB competition, after winning the national award in 2010.
Castlegar may be a growing competitor at the international level after winning the national award in their category last year, said Rodlie.
Communities in Bloom is a Canadian non-profit organization committed to fostering civic pride, environmental responsibility and beautification through community involvement and the challenge of a national program, with focus on enhancing green spaces in communities.