Parks' legacy honoured
BY JENNIFER PELLEGRINI
Review Staff Writer
NIAGARA FALLS - There are a number of Ontario Heritage Foundation signs found throughout the Niagara Parks Commission lands, commemorating various individuals and occasions.
On Friday, it was the commission itself that received one of the blue-and-gold plaques marking its 120 years of "preservation protection" along the Niagara River.
"We couldn't be more pleased or honoured by the acknowledgement," said parks chairman Jim Williams, who was one of the guest speakers during the presentation. "Protecting and preserving are important parts of our mandate and to have us acknowledged for good stewardship of the parts we manage is a fine tribute for us."
The occasion was marked with a plaque unveiling and a reception for several dignitaries, including former Ontario Lt. Governor Lincoln Alexander who is now chairman of the Ontario Heritage Foundation."It's like a history lesson every time I come here," Alexander said, noting the many diverse contributions Niagara Falls has made, such as Nikola Tesla's contribution to hydroelectric power and the Abolitionist movement in Canada which helped free Blacks from slavery in the United States.
The commission was first touted for its own sign in December and learned of the honour in June, said spokeswoman Sarah Wood.
Williams said while the honour was received in 2005, it belongs to everyone involved with the Niagara Parks Commission.
It belongs to anyone who has served as a chairman or as a commissioner in the park's 120-year history.
"It's really their honour, too, he said. "They left us a wonderful legacy."