Could Kami the Fish carve out a new home in Aberdeen, overlooking the Thompson rivers?
The city is giving $4,000 to Tourism Kamloops to replace a trout sculpture outside its office, which is across from Aberdeen Mall.
On Thursday, June 10, the municipality’s culture manager, Barb Berger, detailed to the city’s community services committee $30,000 in community arts grants, which were reviewed and approved by the city’s arts and culture engagement group.
Berger said Tourism Kamloops received the grant to replace a trout sculpture, which is located on a grassy picnic area between Hillside Court and the parking lot of the Tourism Kamloops office building, formerly the visitor centre.
Berger said the sculpture was removed after its tail fell off.
Coun. Denis Walsh questioned the need to replace the sculpture, noting the area is no longer home to the visitor centre for tourists.
Tourism Kamloops recently shifted to meeting tourists in the community, but continues to operate office space out of the building.
Berger said because of electric vehicle charging on site, the area remains busy and the location of the trout — overlooking the North Thompson Valley — creates a sought-after photo opportunity. Pictures of the trout can be found online.
Coun. Sadie Hunter suggested replacing the trout with a sculpture of Kami the Fish, a vintage Kamloops mascot that has gained resurgence of late, in part due to memorabilia featuring the fish sold by Kamloops Chamber of Commerce. Berger said the original trout was made by the Kamloops Woodworkers Guild and she wants to ensure the group is involved.
“Kami has a shot,” she said.
Other groups that received community arts grants this year included:
• The Kamloops Caribbean Society, which received $8,000 for the Kamloops Caribbean Festival;
• Project X Theatre, which received $5,000 for X Fest 2021; • • The Chamber Musicians of Kamloops, which received $5,000 for its 2021-2022 concert series;
• The Kamloops Music Collective, which received $5,000 for a music project;
• The Kamloops North Shore Business Improvement Association, which received $3,000 for street performers.