Each year members of Coast Salish tribes participate in the annual Canoe Journey which leads to a different host site each year. This year, the Lummi Nation is expecting over 100 canoes to land on their shores and will be hosting their pullers and support crews along with friends and families; a gathering that has been estimated to reach 15,000.
The canoes will arrive at the landing beach at the Lummi Stommish Grounds after journeying for several days from various points from as far away as the west coast of Vancouver Island and southern Puget Sound. The canoes are expected to begin arriving about 10am on Wednesday, July 24th.
A live-stream video broadcast of the canoe landings will be broadcast beginning 7am Wednesday.
After the canoes arrive, according to the event website, they will share in “potlatch traditional song, dance and testimonies that have provided our people over the generations with hope, healing and happiness.” Visitors will be camping in and around the Stommish Grounds area during their stay. As a result of the concentration of so many people in the area, a section of Lummi View Drive will be closed (as shown on map below) to all traffic except local, Whatcom Transportation Authority (WTA) and emergency vehicles for the duration of the event.
Each tribe will be provided the opportunity to make presentations, referred to as “protocols,” and with so many tribes participating this year, organizers are saying the event may go an extra day, into Monday, July 29th, to enable everyone to make their presentations.