Aanii, Hello, Bonjour! We grow up knowing our Manitoulin is the largest freshwater lake island in the world. But it is more; Mnidoo Mnis is our Spirit Island home. It has great magic, great healing for hearts and minds.
We are the 7252 km2 (2800 mi2) home of 108 inland lakes, some with their own islands; 4 main rivers with salmon and trout spawning grounds; countless eyeball-blasting trails, lookouts, and pristine waters. Our strong Anishinaabe history and culture add wisdom and power through each season.
Is there one natural outdoor element that you hope would still be here 150 years from now for our Manitoulin people and visitors to see? Think you could capture that special scene or animal or plant in a photograph to show others what you’d wish for them to see?
That’s the Ontario 150 Bondar Challenge.
For us, the hard part will be to choose that one something special. Will it be a migratory bird or turtle or fish or deer or insect? Will it be a glimpse of starlight from our own designated Dark Sky Preserve? A landscape? A waterscape? So many choices…
Here are some of our submitted photos with personal statements about their importance to the photographers:
“I chose Bridal Veil Falls because waterfalls make me feel happy when I see them. I would like to see this in 150 years because it is a pretty place in nature, fun to swim in and I hope people can enjoy this place like I have. It is fun finding crayfish and fossils here.”
“This is Misery Bay. It was so peaceful and beautiful when we visited this provincial park on Manitoulin Island. I want people in Canada to be able to find these wonderful, natural formations 150 years from now to appreciate the beauty the world has to offer, and will continue to offer.”
“I chose a picture of this rabbit we saw on the Coastal Alvar Trail at Misery Bay because it is important for the food chain. I would like to see natural areas like this provincial park to still be around in 150 years for everyone to enjoy.”
“The crabapple in the photo makes me think of my mom because I have a crabapple tree in my yard and so her and I would pick them to make crab apple jelly together.”
“This picture was taken on a family hike and shows me how amazing trees can make everything and how the world would be very different without them.”
“I chose this photo because it shows the real beauty of nature and that even storms have a beautiful side!”
“Manitoulin is beautiful, even by the courthouse.”
“My grandpa has a scrap yard and I was walking back from the pond and I saw it, all by itself. It was the last thing I thought I’d see in a scrap yard.”
“I chose this photo because it really captures the colours of nature and its beauty.”
“This is a photo of different items fallen from trees. I chose this because, I love how beautiful they all look together. I also want the variety of plants to stay.”
“I took this photograph on a lake where my grandparents live. In 150 years I hope this lake is still here because it is my most favourite place in the world.”
“I hope Manitoulin still has lots of fossils. They are important because they can teach us about things that were here years and years ago.”
“I took this photo almost 6 years ago, yet it is still strikingly beautiful.”
“I want this tree at the Harold Noble Memorial Lookout to be here in 150 years. Trees make oxygen and if there are no trees, then no people or animals would be alive.”
“I like this picture because the sky looks clean. In 150 years, I want to see a clean blue sky over Gore Bay.”
“In 150 years I want to see geese flying across the sky over Gore Bay.”
“East Bluff in Gore Bay represents one of the most famous landmarks in our town and you can see ALL of Gore Bay from the famous lookout! I want this to still be around in 150 years because that will show people in the future how much we cared about our land and environment and took care to preserve it for future generations!”
“I think this toadstool will still be here in 150 years. It isn’t going anywhere!”
“I hope that flower gardens are still around in 100 years because it will help the bee population survive. Without flowers, the bees have no food.”
“I choose this photo because the pollen on the bees head is visible. I also like the vibrant colour of the flower. It is important for the bees to continue to pollinate the flowers so the circle of life continues!”