November 2015
Dear Friends of Cedar Hill Park,
 
On behalf of the members of the FCHP Board, we thought we’d share a summary of some of the progress we’ve made in the Park over the last year.  We hope you find it of interest! 

Membership
 
We have over 50 households (approximately 75 individuals) as paid-up members of the Society!  Thank you for supporting The FCHP.  Your membership dues pay for maintaining our website, annual filings with BC Societies, refreshments at events such as our Bowker Creek clean-ups and for hosting of our first-ever Cedar Hill Park Walk planned for May of next year. Thanks to Barb Latham for her good work as Membership Director.

Website
 
If you haven't done so, please visit our website at friendsofcedarhillpark.com.  There, you'll find a wonderful photo gallery along with membership information and forms, schedules for our invasive species removal efforts, a history of the Park, meeting minutes, projects and much more.  Let us know if you have ideas for content.  We're working on a FCHP logo and a promotional pamphlet.

Projects in Cedar Hill Park
 
Dr. Nancy J. Turner provided “Friends” with two tours of native plant species at the north end of the Park last Spring. She opened our eyes to see past the plants and shrubs we know to those that are much less familiar. Some of these plants are in her book “Saanich Ethnobotany: Culturally Important Plants of the WSA′NEC′ People.
  
The Monday morning Pulling Together crew continues to clear invasive species all around the Park.  Please consider joining us for a few hours of great outdoor exercise and camaraderie. Email Jim Moores at FriendsofCedarHillPark@gmail.com to be on our list for Monday crew notifications. 
 
All around the Park one can see the progress we have achieved under the leadership of Jim Moores and Paul Bishop. This includes the recent indigenous shrub plantings in the recently acquired wetlands north of Kings Pond.​
  
Bowker Creek's Reach 17
 
On October 24, we held our fifth Bowker Creek Clean-up event.  After removing blackberry and blackberry roots, we were able to plant 400 trees and shrubs provided by Saanich Parks in two significant areas on the west side of the Creek between the metal and wooden bridges.  Andrew Burger, Natural Areas Technician for Saanich Parks, helped FCHP to plan and complete this work. 
 
Examples of plants now there are salmonberry, thimbleberry, ocean spray, red alder and red osier dogwood as well as Oso Berry (once referred to as Indian Plum).   Combined with the clearing and planting we did on the east side of Bowker Creek last year, the whole area looks great.  Do have a look if you're walking the trail; you'll notice a big difference!

We are now encouraging Saanich and the Bowker Creek Initiative members to undertake the restoration of the area north of the wooden bridge as their next major project for the creek. 
 
Cedar Hill Park Walk
 
Plans are well underway for a first-ever Cedar Hill Park Walk to take place on the afternoon of May 14, 2016.  Presenters will be at nine different locations around the Park sharing information on topics such as the history of the Elizabeth McRae family and home, and the history of citizens’ protection of Cedar Hill Park. Good friends of Cedar Hill Park will identify its native plant species and their use by First Peoples.  Paul and Jim, who started Pulling Together in CHP about 10 years ago, will talk about their projects from the bluff overlooking the pump house.  Dr. Roy Shepherd and Colleen, long time stewards of King's Pond will tell their story.  Additionally, you will be welcomed to the golf club and Recreation and Arts Centre.  The Bowker Creek Initiative representatives will participate.   Barb Latham is leading the planning team.  She will be seeking 18 people to assist the presenters at various locations.  If you're interested in helping out on May 14th, please email her at FriendsofCedarHillPark@gmail.com

Preserving the Park for Future Generations
 
We believe that the Park will be best protected for the future if Saanich prepares a Master Plan that incorporates our hope for the preservation of green and natural areas. We've developed a draft charter document that outlines our vision for the Park. We are continuing discussions to develop a Master Plan for Cedar Hill Park with Parks and Recreation department staff and several Council members.  Ideally such a plan would be a community-led process with Parks and Rec and other stakeholders.

Feature Quiz: how well do you know your Park?
Can you name any six of the nine streets that have easy access to the Park (not including Finlayson or Ascot Drive)?  See bottom of page for answers. 
 
Friends of Cedar Hill Park Board

Our Board meets every other month to report to each other on progress and discuss plans for the future.  If you're interested in getting involved on the Board or any other activity, please let us know.  We will be holding a meeting of the full membership within the next couple of months to celebrate our second year birthday as a Society so please watch your inbox for an invitation! 
 
Best wishes,
 
Susan Haddon - President
Luis Netter - Vice President
 
Quiz answers:  Tolmie Place, Ocean View Road, Derby Road, Tracksell Avenue, Queensbury Avenue, Diana Road, Astoria Street, Camrose Crescent, James HeightsType your paragraph here.

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