Harrison Hot Springs Mayor Leo Facio pays tribute to local legend John Green, standing in front of two sand sculptures recently created in his honour at the Harrison Lake Hotel’s courtyard. (Screenshot/Harrison Hot Springs)

‘A very nice gentleman’: Sand sculptors pay tribute to local legend John Green

Sculpture tribute to John Green created in courtyard of Harrison Lake Hotel

Sand sculptors recently came together to pay tribute to the late Agassiz-Harrison legend John Green.

The sculptures, sheltered away from the elements, featured Sasquatch looking thoughtful, stroking its chin over a book as it lounged on a couch made of sand as well as a traditional yet massive sandcastle. Over the course of several days, sandcastlers Damon Langlois and Kenneth Abrahams created the sculptures in the courtyard of the Harrison Lake Hotel.

SASS coming out of the sand!

Posted by I Got SASS on Saturday, August 1, 2020

Mayor Leo Facio said Green was the architect of the World Championships of Sand Sculpture, a competition that once drew further beach-goers and tourists to the area even after the competition was done. He thanked the hotel and the sculptors on behalf of the village for hosting the tribute.

RELATED: Dedication to Village patriarch

“At one point, we had over 70 artists on the beach [and 50 sculptures] and that carried on for many years,” Facio said in a video address. “It was a wonderful exhibition and it drew many thousands of people for many years. I think this is a very nice tribute to the late John Green. It’s a great way to honour a very nice gentleman.”

Mayor of Harrison Hot Springs
Leo Facio
Paying tribute to John Green sandcastle exhibit.

Posted by Harrison Lake Hotel on Friday, August 14, 2020

Green is remembered for more than his love for sand sculpture. he served on Harrison Hot Springs Village Council and as mayor. He is remembered as a proud leader, a community devotee, a journalist, historian and Sasquatch authority.

Before purchasing what was then known as the Agassiz-Harrison Advance, Green had a storied career in journalism, working for the Toronto Globe and Mail, Vancouver Province and Victoria Colonist.

RELATED: Remembering John Green’s indelible footprint

After many years of investigation and chronicling his own first-hand accounts, Green wrote several Sasquatch books and came to be seen as an authority, his approach being a healthy hybrid of skepticism, realism and exhaustive research.

During his time as a village official in both councillor and mayor capacity, he helped created Harrison’s iconic beach and lagoon. He volunteered hours of his time at the Kilby Historic Museum in Harrison Mills, serving as its president for 10 years and having a significant hand in getting the site declared a historic site by the province.

Green passed away in May 2016 in Chilliwack at the age of 89. His children described his days as a “long and varied life.”

With files from Ashley Wadhwani

Harrison Hot SpringsOutdoors and Recreation

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Harrison Hot Springs Village council dedicated a stone bench and memorial plaque to honour former mayor and patriarch of the community John Willison Green.

John Wilson Green passed away in May of 2016. Sand sculptors came to Harrison Hot Springs recently to pay tribute to his love for Sasquatch and the spirit of the man himself (File Photo/Observer)

The writer of this article misheard Mayor Facio’s quote; he was in fact saying there were 70 artists rather than 17; people close to the project noted this made up roughly 50 sand sculptures. The Observer regrets the error.

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