Well-wishers greeted the Prime Minister and his wife as they arrives at Sidney Spit. (Steven Heywood/News staff)

Prime Minister paddles at Sidney Spit during B.C. trip

Justin Trudeau addresses the wildfires, environment during brief visit to Gulf Islands National Park

There was a little bit of everything for visitors to Sidney Spit on Saturday. Good weather, excellent scenery, great people … and one Canadian Prime Minister.

Justin Trudeau made a brief visit to the Gulf Islands National Park with with wife Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, during their current visit to B.C. After a short boat ride over to Sidney Spit, and after a few selfies, Trudeau and Gregoire Trudeau hopped into some kayaks for a paddle along the spit. The paddle wasn’t without incident, however.

Trudeau acknowledged his spill onto the Salish Sea with reporters later (he missed his kayak entry) and spent some time with a bride and groom, Michelle and Heiner Gruetzner of Sidney, who were moored in the park. They quickly motored over to Trudeau and Gregoire, shared a few words and took a lot of pictures.

“They congratulated us,” Heinar said. “And she got a couple kisses.”

“We saw the boat coming in and were ready,” Michelle added.

After their quick paddle, Trudeau and his wife returned to the beach for a quick question and answer session with media awaiting their arrival.

“It’s a good day to be out on the water, a great day to be in the water,” Trudeau joked about his spill. “I can report the water is definitely wet. I’m just happy the national media was there to capture that.”

Gregoire Trudeau, who is the honourary guide for families with Parks Canada, says any time people are enjoying the great outdoors is a chance to be grounded and connected.

“We are really happy to be here and meet families that are enjoying the summer,” she said.

Asked about the proposal for a marine conservation area for the Salish Sea, Trudeau said the government is working on a plan for 2020.

“This is a natural place to make sure we’re protecting it for future generations,” he said, adding later during a related question, “I have been a grandson of B.C. all my life. Canadians understand, we need to grow the economy in a way that protects the environment.”

Trudeau also repeated his government’s commitment to the people displaced by the wildfires in B.C. this summer.

“As I’ve said the whole way through, we will be there as a federal government … to support families and businesses affected.”

Trudeau also addressed questions about the Trans Mountain Pipleline project, the state of the government in Venezuela and immigration and asylum-seekers crossing into Canada from the U.S.

Following his visit to Sidney Spit, Trudeau was expected to travel to Tofino, to take part in a regional round table with local First Nations leaders.

 

Parks staff react as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau misses his mark and experiences the Salish Sea first hand. (Steven Heywood/News staff)

Justin Trudeau holds a baby as family snap photos. (Steven Heywood/News staff)

Just Posted

Santa’s Light parade glides through town on Saturday

Vancouver Island’s most popular Christmas parade is back for its 36th year

VIDEO: Innovating healthier homes

NZ Builders bring commercial concept into residential realm to improve energy efficiency and health

West Shore RCMP catch thieves in the act in Colwood

Thieves were trying to steal a utility trailer from the driveway of a home

FISHING ADVENTURES: Winter fishing starts to pick up

Crabbing in Sooke Harbour continues to be good with large male Dungeness around

Sooke girls volleyball squad places seventh at Island tourney

Dawn Gibson Sooke News Mirror The EMCS senior girls volleyball team made… Continue reading

VIDEO: Innovating healthier homes

NZ Builders bring commercial concept into residential realm to improve energy efficiency and health

Wet weather expected for much of coastal B.C.

The Weather Network is calling for up to 200mm of rain to fall in some areas of the South Coast and Vancouver Island

B.C. reporter reflects on covering Charles Manson

Charles Manson, leader of a murderous cult, died on Sunday at 83

Running back propels Spectrum Thunder into first Subway Bowl final

Brandon Robbins scores hat trick of touchdowns

ICBC overbilling for crash repairs not the problem, dealers say

Collision repair shops reject union claim of inflated costs

B.C. groups to address child sex abuse in sports

viaSport is organizing a full day of education in association with Canadian Centre for Child Protection and the Coaching Association of Canada.

Report sets exercise guidelines for young kids, including ‘tummy time’ for babies

Kids aged one to four should get at least three hours of physical activity throughout the day

Stampeders return to Grey Cup with 32-28 win over Edmonton Eskimos

The Stampeders will face the Toronto Argonauts next Sunday in Ottawa for the title

Nebraska approves TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline

Nebraska’s Public Service Commission approved TransCanada’s Keystone XL route in a close vote

Most Read