Could 'The Nathan Fillion Civilian Pavilion' come to fruition?

In honour of Edmonton actor Nathan Fillion, a petition is proposing naming a small building in a new downtown park "The Nathan Fillion Civilian Pavilion.”

Petition seeks to honour Edmonton actor with name on downtown park building

A petition to name a building in honour of Edmonton screen actor Nathan Fillion is gaining traction. (Jordan Strauss/Invision/The Associated Press)

The City of Edmonton announced plans earlier this week to turn downtown parking lots north of Jasper Avenue into a park.

Warehouse Campus Neighborhood Central Park, about the size of two football fields, will span nearly two blocks from Jasper Avenue to 102nd Avenue and between 106th and 108th streets. 

Now a petition is proposing to name a small building in the park "The Nathan Fillion Civilian Pavilion."

Fillion is an Edmonton actor who made it big, appearing on television's Firefly, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and a variety of soap operas.

"Everyone wants to root for the hometown guy and you don't see many bigger actors than him in movies or TV these days," said Kelly Froese, creator of the Edmonton Nerd List, in an interview Thursday on CBC Edmonton's Radio Active

Born and raised in Edmonton, Fillion hit it big when he moved to New York.

The actor has demonstrated his range in a host of roles, from soap operas to horror movies, to musicals, space westerns, and even Disney's Cars 3.

His versatility has garnered him a fan base as varied, so it's hard to say for which production he's best known.

"You might get his role in Buffy, you might get his role in Firefly," Froese said. "You might get his role in Castle or The Rookie or maybe voice acting in a video game or voice acting in some of the animated features.

"It really depends on who you ask. I mean, I'm a big Firefly guy, but you might get 10 different answers from 10 different people."

The petition for the tongue-twisting name for the pavilion had more than 1,200 signatures Thursday afternoon. By Friday, the number had grown to more than 3,000.

Even if the pavilion is not named after Fillion, the initiative has raised the chances for some other tribute to the Edmonton actor in the future, Froese said.

"Even if he doesn't get the pavilion, maybe he gets a bridge next time," he said. "I don't think I can think of any other Edmontonian I'd love to see their name on a building or a pavilion or a park or a bridge … I'd vote for it."


Thandiwe Konguavi is an award-winning journalist who was born in Zimbabwe and has received honours from the Canadian Church Press, the Canadian Association of Black Journalists and the Radio Television Digital News Association Canada. She is a web writer and editor of First Person columns at CBC Edmonton. She is also the digital producer of CBC's docuseries, Black Life: Untold Stories, debuting on CBC Gem and CBC-TV in October. Reach her at thandiwe.konguavi@cbc.ca.

With files from CBC Edmonton’s Clare Bonnyman