Ten enthusiastic speakers gathered in Rossland Miner’s Hall on Wednesday, May 7 in front of an interested audience. The theme they all had as a focal point for the night was Life Path, seen from different perspectives and lives. RED Talks – stories worth shredding, is Rossland’s own way of the famous TED Talks consisting of stories worth spreading put on by Seven Summits Center for Learning. The night was filled with encouraging words and experiences, showing that both the ups and downs of life are crucial for happiness.
Fletcher Quince, owner of the old Montreal Bank, got the speeches started with his life story compressed into a 15-minute speech. He talked about his life path and how his plans have changed on several occasions. For some time forest firefighting was the dream job and he also studied neuroscience at university. Of which he remembers nothing. Different circumstances made him stumble upon the old bank in Rossland as it was for sale. Buying the gallery was a large commitment and the different approach he thinks made the community come forward and add to his business.
Sophia Rodyakin, student at Seven Summits Center for Learning, shared her family story about her grandmother and her life path. She explained that her grandmother in life was “handed a bad hand of cards but that she played her cards well”, her life story was filled with setbacks and obstacles she had to overcome but she managed to keep a positive attitude. “Hard work can get you through a lot” she summarized and ended with saying that to choose to be happy, confident and positive leads you to a better outcome.
Hanna Klemmensen played two beautiful pieces on the piano, opening up with Fredrich Kulauh’s Sonatina in C Major and finishing off with Clair de Lune composed by Claude Debussy. Another musical act for the night was the Castlegar youth band Roy Has Fire who played an acoustic set and talked about their upcoming tour. Their tour will be focused on celebrating the uniqueness youth has to bring and want to share the acceptance for different people.
Ian Lockey, Canadian Paralympic athlete, shared his story from breaking his back while snowboarding, losing 50 percent of the use of his muscles waist down and the road back to being an athlete. He learned that instead of saying “I can’t” he could say “how can I?” making sure he was able to walk, bike and snowboard again. Explaining that “if you’re having fun and are enjoying yourself, you succeed”, Lockey did more than being able to snowboard again, this past winter he was one of the Canadian athletes in the Sochi Olympics.
Nitrogen 15 is something that makes Jenny Coleshill, from Grand Forks and the Granby Wilderness Society, excited. She discussed her work and research of the transparent gas, explaining that it is the most stable form of nitrogen but the rarest form to find in nature. Almost exclusivity found in marine environments she found a connection between the nuclide and the salmon travelling up rivers to spawn. Coleshill concluding that “The salmon is creating a better habitat for its future generations”.
Jeff Weaver talked about celebrities and social causes. He wants to encourage people to look how celebrities advertise and why they act the way they do. He brings up the dichotomy of celebrities in charity campaigns, why are they participating in charity campaigns? And how much do the campaigns help? He brought up Jane Fonda as an example where she was in a photo with North Vietnamese soldiers in the Vietnam War. Unfortunately she was sitting in front of a building where North American soldiers were being tortured and her actions gave more fire for the people prone to the war than the ones trying to stop it.
Canadian paralympic athlete Kimberly Joines has tackled many setbacks in her life. Numerous bones in her body have been broken and she has been through surgery in four different countries. During her filmed speech she quotes Charles Bukowski, “You have to die a few times before you can live” and repeats throughout her speech “you are stronger than you think”. She has definitely been through some rough times but she has seen a lot of wonderful parts of life too, she says that you need those deep lows to really appreciate the highs.
Barnes explained that the act of movement has become suppressed in our daily society. We do not use our bodies the way we could, “we have grown away from movement”. Liam practices Parkour and says it is all about “getting from point A to point B, as efficiently as possible” and that the practice of movement could help us humans to become less prone to hurt ourselves. Explaining that the kids these days are used to falling on soft playgrounds, ‘we are the paranoid generation”, making falls as adults devastating. “If you fall as a kid and for example break your arm, you are less likely to do it as an adult”.
Jonny Coleshill, principal of Seven Summits Center for Learning, was very pleased with the outcome of the night. “I have wanted to run a TED-esque event for a long time as an educator, and the freedoms and opportunity with Seven Summits and our group of learners made it really possible, and helped it to become a great evening and event!” said Coleshill. He and the Seven Summits Center for Learning are already excited for the next years event, the Second Annual Red Talks. To end it all he said “but truly, I couldn’t be more happy with how it turned out!”.