Park Board to consider new names for Canada Island in Riverfront Park

Spokane Tribe of Indians will offer name recommendation

Fianna Dickson, 509.625.6297

Thursday, October 20, 2016 at 8:25 a.m.

The City of Spokane Park Board will consider a resolution to begin the process for renaming Canada Island in Riverfront Park, with the Canadian Government’s blessing.

Renaming the island marks the beginning of a partnership to highlight the sacred connection between this island and the Spokane Tribe, and to ensure that all people who visit the island in the days and years to come will know and appreciate its strong native history.

Taking the lead from the Spokane Tribe of Indians to provide a recommended name, the Park Board will consider the resolution at the November 10 Park Board meeting at 1:30 p.m. in City Hall’s City Council Chambers. All citizens are encouraged to provide testimony about the resolution and the renaming process.

The new name will likely be chosen at the December 8 or January 12 Park Board meeting, at which time additional testimony will be encouraged about the specific name nominated for selection.

In 1974 as part of Expo, the island was re-named from Cannon Island to Canada Island, to recognize Canada’s participation in and contributions to Expo.

In an August 27 ceremony during the Gathering of the Falls Pow Wow to signify re-dedication, the Consul General of Canada, James K. Hill, shared his thoughts on renaming the island on behalf of the Canadian Government.

“Small acts like renaming Canada Island to honor the original inhabitants of the Spokane area are symbolically important to the ongoing process in both Canada and the U.S. to heal and to build new relationships based on the recognition of tribal rights, respect, trust, cooperation, and partnership. I applaud your decision and the spirit of respect and honour it represents,” Consul General Hill said.

Citizens are welcome to provide input on renaming the island. They can do so in-person at a Park Board meeting, via email to, by calling 625.6200, or writing to Park Board, City Hall, 808 W. Spokane Falls Blvd., Spokane, WA 99201.

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