Harrison country musician Todd Richard is showing his opposition to a quarry application near the Village with the release of a music video for a song called ‘Stand Up,’ from his first album Journey On.
In the video Richard, a 19-year Harrison Hot Springs resident, asks viewers to sign a petition to stop the quarry – a petition that already has nearly 6,000 signatures of the targeted 7,500.
“Stand up and prove that you’re no man’s fool,” sings Richard next to a Sasquatch statue, before the video cuts to scenes of protesters – mostly volunteers from the group Friends of Agassiz and Harrison Hot Springs.
“You have a heart, a soul, a mind,” he sings. “When push comes to shove you gotta stand right up, hold your ground and let them know they’ve crossed that line.”
The quarry has been an ongoing source of contention in the Village since March, when a ‘notice of work’ ad was placed in the Obsever, giving the public the chance to have their say about a proposed construction aggregate quarry set to be developed off Hot Springs Road.
Once locals caught wind of the plan, it didn’t take long for an opposition group to form. Within months, a petition had garnered thousands of signatures, a public information meeting had been held and a letter-writing campaign was underway.
Opposition groups say the mine will be bad for the environment, air quality, and tourism – Harrison’s only industry.
At a public information session in July, quarry representatives responded to the criticism saying there’s a number of methods used to mitigate the impact of mines such as consistent monitoring and regulation.
There’s been no decision from the government’s statutory decision maker or the government itself on the state of the quarry application, but the citizen opposition group – Friends of Agassiz and Harrison Hot Springs – continue to fight with letters, petitions and now – a music video.
Richard said the song wasn’t technically written about the quarry, but he and friend Jason Gallant, who filmed and created the video, realized that it fit perfectly for the situation in Harrison.
“‘I’m telling ya Todd, we can use that video to get the word out about that quarry,’” Richard recalled Gallant saying to him. “Both of us agreed that a lot of people have no idea about this proposal for the rock quarry on the road into Harrison.”
Filmed on the property of homeowners next to the proposed quarry site, the videos extras were anti-quarry residents.
“It was really cool to see the community come together to ‘stand up,’” said Richard. “It’s going to effect a lot of people.”
The video was published Oct. 1 and had over 10,000 views in the first week. As of Oct. 11, there is nearly 20,000.
“The hope is that, along with awareness, it’ll also get more people to sign the petition,” Richard said.