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‘Goodwin’s Way’ sees community searching for autonomy over its past, and its future

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A new documentary explores a British Columbia town’s resistance to a coal-powered future 100 years after the killing of controversial local labour activist Ginger Goodwin. The Green Film Series presents “Goodwin’s Way” at the Gibsons Heritage Playhouse, Monday September 19 and at the SC Art Centre on Thursday September 22.

When highway signs commemorating folk hero Ginger Goodwin disappear, the documentary finds nearby Cumberland, BC at a crossroads with its history.

'Goodwin's Way' Green Film Series Monday September 19, Gibsons Heritage Playhouse, and Thursday September 22 at the SC Art Centre in Sechlet.

Goodwin, a rebellious labour activist, was slain by police under mysterious circumstances almost a century ago, yet his name still elicits wounds that date back to the town’s coal mining past.

Residents weave an oral tapestry of fact and myth — some remember Goodwin as a criminal, while many others admire the ideals of equality and self-determination he fought for in a town dependant on a boom to bust resource economy.

Now, as young families set their sights on building a sustainable generation, a new proposal for a coal mine threatens to make history repeat itself. Amidst an effort to oppose the project, residents young and old reconnect with Ginger Goodwin’s legacy — his ‘way’.

Director Neil Vokey will attend the Gibsons screening in person for a Q & A after the film, and will participate via Skype after the film in Sechelt. Labour songs by Grant Olson before the film in Gibsons, and introduction to the Sechelt screening by local MLA Nicholas Simons.

The screening in Gibsons will be at the Heritage Playhouse Monday September 19 at 7:30pm, and in Sechelt at the SC Art Centre on September 22, at 7:30pm. Admission is by donation at the door (suggested $10). For more information go to

Green Film Series events are meant to foster the role of film as a catalyst for dialogue, networking and action, encouraging community engagement on environmental and sustainability issues. The series is produced by the Rhizome Up! Media Society.