Today, I read reading about the Bill Mason Memorial Scholarship Fund on the Paddle Canada website. This $1000 scholarship is available student enrolled in an outdoor education or environmental studies program at a Canadian college or university. It is not a new scholarship having been around since 1991 when Morten Asfeldt from University of Alberta was its first recipient.
Who was Bill Mason?
Well, Bill Mason was a canoeist and an artist but he was best known for his film-making. He worked for many years in the early 80’s making movies for the National Film Board. In Canada, many of his films were shown to school kids all through the 80's with his most popular being "Paddle to the Sea" and "The Rise and Fall of the Great Lakes". He was one of the first people to use film as a medium for whitewater canoe instruction. "Path of the Paddle" and "Waterwalker" are absolute classics. I never had the great fortune to meet him, but I have met his kids Paul and Becky at several paddling festivals through the years.