Ethnographer and anthropologist Wade Davis will be speaking in Clearwater on Thursday, May 30 at 7 p.m. at Clearwater Secondary School. In addition to his life experience, he will talk about one of his favorite topics, Sacred Headwaters and the relevance of that topic to Wells Gray Park.
The following day, Friday, May 31, Davis will officiate at the opening ceremony for Wells Gray World Heritage Year. This year celebrates 100 years since Helmcken Falls was first seen by Europeans in what is now Wells Gray Park. It also will mark the opening of the Thompson Rivers University (TRU) Wilderness Field Station, currently under construction in Upper Clearwater (25 km north of Clearwater on the road to Wells Gray Park).
The opening ceremony for Wells Gray World Heritage Year will commence at 11 a.m. in Upper Clearwater Hall.Following the ceremony, participants will join Davis in an in-person conversation. Bring a lunch, water and walking shoes for this once-in-a-lifetime event.
Davis holds degrees in anthropology and biology and received his PhD in ethnobotany, all from Harvard University. He spent over three years in the Amazon and Andes as a plant explorer, living among 15 indigenous groups in eight Latin American nations while making some 6,000 botanical collections. His work later took him to Haiti to investigate folk preparations implicated in the creation of zombies, an assignment that led to his writing The Serpent and the Rainbow (1986), an international best seller later released as a motion picture.
A native of British Columbia, Davis, a licensed river guide, has worked as park ranger, forestry engineer, and conducted ethnographic fieldwork among several indigenous societies of northern Canada. His photographs have appeared in some 20 books and more than 80 magazines, journals and newspapers, including National Geographic