As part of the celebrations, I was invited to read my 'Surrey poem' (the one the City commissioned me to write way back in 2012) at my local Arts Centre.
So that the guests would have something to take away, staff members made colourful maple-leaf-shaped pieces of pottery with "Semiahmoo Arts 2016" stamped into them.
And I -- well, I made chapbooks.
This was how my dining room table looked a couple of days ago -- covers (with individual stampings on each) lined up down its length, drying.
The pages had already been printed, so it was just a matter of folding them and folding coloured end pages.
After that, the task of binding each book -- with, I'll admit, the simplest of methods -- just an in-and-out, tied off with a knot.
But much more impressive than my short poem was the performance by local artist, Roxanne Charles. A member of the Semiahmoo First Nation and a Director on the board of Semiahmoo Arts, she performed a dance to the accompaniment of a very moving video presentation on the Lost and Missing Women.
The photo doesn't do justice to the costume she wore, one that she'd designed and made herself. I didn't dare turn on my flash during the performance, so you'll have to zoom in and use your imagination.
I'm pretty sure the delegates who were bused down to our arts event went away with a positive impression -- and hopefully, a better understanding of just how varied and complex our sprawling city really is.
As for my symbolic rendering of that varied complexity, I hope my finished chapbooks helped to illustrate the rainbow of diversity that is Surrey.