Forks hosts native canoe ‘gifting’

On Saturday, July 8, the Olympic Natural Resources Center in Forks is celebrating the gifting of a native canoe to the center from the Viola Penn Riebe family.

The large, hand-carved canoe dubbed “The Viola,” had been on display in Pioneer Memorial Park in Sequim since 1967 but was moved to Hoh and Quileute lands near Forks in early April.

The canoe was made by William E. “Yum” Penn and was returned to Viola Penn Riebe, a Hoh Tribal member, who in turn gifted it to the University of Washington’s ONRC as “a historic link to strengthen cultural educational connections between the tribes and the College of the Environment’s School of Environmental and Forest Sciences research station.”

Priscilla Hudson of the Sequim Prairie Garden Club worked for years to find the canoe’s origins.