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Bamfield marine centre preparing to mark 40 years

Aug 23 2012

Federal government funding cuts are not going to stop anniversary celebrations at Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre.

The centre, a major employer and visitor draw for the tiny community on the west coast of Vancouver Island, lost $484,000 in funding when the government this year cut grants issued through the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council.

The cuts resulted in two fewer jobs and program cancellations at the centre.

However, 40th anniversary celebrations are going ahead Sept. 1 and 2, said Hana Kucera, a staff member who is helping to organize the events.

"Invitations are flying out of our offices," she said. "We hope everyone will come and celebrate how far we've come and cheer us on for the future."

Anyone - including students, staff and the public - who has taken part in the centre's programs is invited, Kucera said.

Organizers are hoping the celebrations will also help them reach out to new supporters.

The centre "has been a leading research and education institution since it began operating 40 years ago," said director Brad Anholt.

"This anniversary is a chance to reflect on what we've accomplished and to map the future."

The family-friendly celebrations will include boat trips and a live video and audio feeds from divers.

For more information on the celebrations, go to bms.bc.ca/alumni/celebrate.

jlavoie@timescolonist.com

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