A South Surrey woman is honouring her family by sponsoring a bench commemorating a great achievement.
Sheena Ball chose a bench location near Mount Garibaldi, which her grandfather and great-grandfather (A.T. Dalton and W.T. Dalton, respectively) scaled more than 100 years ago. The historic endeavor – in August 1907 – is the first-known ascent of the mountain.
“It was a great feat for them in those days. They didn’t have road transportation, so they had to take a boat and bush-whack from Squamish,” Ball said. “They had no technical gear like we do today. It was quite remarkable, I’m very proud.”
Ball said she jumped at the idea of honouring her family’s history with the limited-edition bench this summer, as it would fulfill her mother’s wish.
Prior to her death this year, Ball’s mother had been planning on commemorating the achievement with a bench or plaque, and although she is not able to see the finished product, Ball said she would have loved it.
“She would have been really, really pleased that we had followed through with her plan,” Ball said. “My brother and all the Dalton cousins are happy to have this done.”
The bench, which will be located near the Elfin Lakes shelter in the Diamond Head area of Garibaldi Provincial Park, will be installed next year after the snow caps melt, giving Ball and her family time to gear up for their next goal.
“While we’re waiting for the snow to melt and the bench to be installed, we can spend the time getting in shape to go up there so we can take a picture sitting on it,” Ball said.
There are 57 remaining benches available for sponsorship at a cost of $1,500. The benches are a part of a celebration of 100 years of provincial park programs. People who want to sponsor their own bench can go to the BC Parks Website at www.bcparkbench.ca to choose their park and bench location.
All money raised goes to the Park Enhancement Fund and will be used to fund more improvements to park facilities.