Klingons raise flag at Timmins city hall to mark historic anniversary

There's a flag flying in front of the city hall in Timmins, Ont. — but it's not one that usually adorns municipal buildings.

On earth.

The raising of the Klingon Empire flag in northern Ontario this week doesn't mean the battle-hungry alien race of warriors, made popular in the Star Trek television franchise, has conquered the region.

The demonstration, and the proclamation from the mayor that March 23 is Klingon Empire Day in Timmins, is to celebrate 50 years of Klingons on-screen.

The Star Trek Original Series episode Errand of Mercy was first broadcast on March 23, 1967, featuring Canadian actor John Colicos portraying Commander Kor.

Klingons are 'honest people'

This week's events were organized by a Star Trek fan group in Timmins called Crimson Dawn.

The group is also a chapter of an international fan organization called the Klingon Assault Group.

There are many reasons to honour the alien race, said Crimson Dawn group member Karen Hutchison, also known by her Klingon title of "Lieutenant TlharnoQ."

"Klingons are very honest people, very passionate people. They are very straight-to-the-point and are very concerned with honour as a society," Hutchison said.

Hutchison said she watched her first episode of Star Trek when she was three years old.

"Like many young people, I thought the bad guys were cool," she said. "In the original series, Klingons were the bad guys."

"Since then, they have [become] a proud warrior race that is not evil but works with the federation [and] can still provide conflict and opposition," Hutchison said.

'Iconic' alien race

Representatives from Crimson Dawn joined Timmins Mayor Steve Black for the proclamation and flag raising on Monday.

"The flag flies over city hall today to recognize 50 Years of Klingon culture and development as a mirror for humanity, as well as the contributions of Klingon fans to their communities over the years," read part of a statement posted Thursday on the group's Facebook page.

"[Klingons] would serve as the foundation of what would become one of the most iconic alien races, not only in Star Trek, but all of science fiction," the group wrote.

Click here to listen to Karen Hutchison speak to CBC's afternoon radio show Up North about Klingon Empire Day in Timmins.