Nimoy visits Vulcan, Alta.
VULCAN, ALTA. ñ Spock came home Friday.
Leonard Nimoy, famous for his role as Star Trekís Spock, was warmly welcomed Friday to the small rural Alberta town of Vulcan, where he told residents to live long and prosper.
People lined the streets of the town to catch of glimpse of Nimoy, who waved to the crowd from the back seat of an Escalade during a short parade through the townís downtown.
The actor unveiled a bronze statue of Spock that will be displayed downtown and gave a brief speech in which he shared his appreciation for the reception he received.
ìWait till Bill Shatner (who plays Star Trekís Capt. James T. Kirk) hears about this,î he told the crowd to a loud cheer.
Nimoy said he has had an ìextraordinary experienceî with the Spock character over the past 44 years, working around the world and many meeting extraordinary people.
ìIn all of these experiences I have never had an experience quite as touching here as Iím having here today and I appreciate it. Thank you,î said Nimoy.
Nimoy said he was delighted to be in Vulcan and thanked those who came for their warm welcome, big hearts and kindness.
Star Trek is a hopeful story about the future, and the Spock character – who Nimoy called dignified, intelligent and professional – has been a role model to many people
ìIím very proud to be associated with him,î he said.
Nimoy, who reprises his role in the 2009 Star Trek movie, helped secure a private screening for local residents after he learned that Paramount had told the town that it would not be getting the film’s premiere.
ìI canít say it strongly enough, thank you, thank you, thank you, and may each one of you live long and prosper,î said Nimoy.
After his speech, Nimoy was presented with a key to Vulcan, which coincidentally shares its name with Spockís home planet, so that ìheís welcome home anytime he wants,î said Vulcan Mayor Tom Grant, who gave him the key.
ìI will cherish it,î said Nimoy. ìIt will hang in my office at home.î
Nimoy shook hands with local dignitaries, including Grant, and signed some autographs at the Vulcan Tourism and Trek Station before taking part in the parade. He also toured the building and saw the Star Trek memorabilia on display, including a pair of Spock ears that he has lent to the town.
Nimoy was looking forward to visiting Vulcan, said Dayna Dickens, Vulcanís tourism co-ordinator.
ìI canít believe this happened today. So happy.î
Nimoyís visit was the culmination of many residentsí dreams, she said.
ìLeonard Nimoyís visit is almost the holy grail of celebrities that could come.î
Dickens hopes that Vulcan businesses can continue to take advantage of the opportunities that come along with the townís promotion the Star Trek theme.
The townís main streets were filled with not only Vulcan-area residents but also fans from the two nearest cities, Calgary and Lethbridge.
Danielle French, who works for the City of Calgary, said her boss gave her the day off work after she jokingly suggested she would like to see Nimoy.
ìItís a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,î said French.
Nimoy visits Vulcan, Alta.