BC Convoy Participant Hosts Hockey Event and BBQ to Promote Reconciliation – Parksville Qualicum Beach News

A BC participant in the Ottawa Convoy protest held a BBQ with luck and kids’ hockey games in a parking lot at the Langley Recreation Center on Saturday, February 26.

John Bancroft, an excavator operator who lives in the Brookswood neighborhood of Langley, said he would like the event to lead to more similar face-to-face meetings, to start a process of reconciliation and help heal divisions in the country.

“It brings the community together,” Bancroft told the Langley Advance Times.

“I just make everyone shake hands again and talk. Once we get started, everything will work itself out.

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Ottawa Convoy participant John Bancroft hosted a potluck barbecue and hockey games for the kids on Saturday, February 26 at the George Preston Recreation Centre. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

George Preston’s meeting was not, he pointed out, about the anti-vaccine warrant protest he attended.

“It’s completely separate [from that]Bancroft said.

“It’s my personal thing.”

READ ALSO: VIDEO: Hundreds of supporters rally in Langley to support Ottawa protest convoy

Bancroft said he left Ottawa before police intervened and began making numerous arrests.

“I had a feeling,” he recalls.

His memories of the Ottawa event were positive.

“My experience has been nothing but community coming together,” Bancroft remarked, adding that he hadn’t personally witnessed any of the reported incidents of misbehavior while in Ottawa. .

READ ALSO: Langley – MP for Aldergrove, Tako Van Popta, supports the “freedom convoy”

Another convoy participant, Al Fortin, a councilor from Barrière District, drove up to bring the “Unity Cup”, an improvised replica of the Stanley Cup created by convoy participants, to the event.

Fortin explained that the mug was created from a “garbage can and a mop bucket” after he and fellow convoy participant Ron Rotzetter decided to use an empty stretch of street.

“I said, let’s start hockey here,” recalls Fortin.

“For about two and a half weeks, three weeks, we went down every day with it and played hockey and signed people,” Fortin said.

The cup was entirely covered with names.

Ottawa convoy participant John Bancroft, organizer of a potluck and hockey game for children on Saturday, February 26 at the George Preston Recreation Centre, brought a Canadian flag covered with signatures from the rally.  (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Ottawa convoy participant John Bancroft, organizer of a potluck and hockey game for children on Saturday, February 26 at the George Preston Recreation Centre, brought a Canadian flag covered with signatures from the rally. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

“I don’t know how many signatures there are in there, but there are a few,” Fortin said.

“A small fringe minority, let’s go with that.”

Like Bancroft, Fortin left Ottawa before police began making mass arrests.

“I wanted to leave with this experience of unity. That’s what I saw, all the time I was there, unity.

READ ALSO: VIDEO: Crowd of supporters welcome truck convoy against vaccine mandate in Aldergrove

The event was held without permission from the Township of Langley, but Mayor Jack Froese noted that while the municipality doesn’t typically rent out parking lots, it also doesn’t stop people from meeting on empty land. , as long as there are no violations. laws or regulations, such as liquor laws.

“People use our parking lots for meetings all the time,” Froese said.

– with files by Matthew Claxton


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