By: Korie Marshall
The Valemount Museum is celebrating a 100th anniversary this year, and has created a special pin to help commemorate the occasion.
The building that now houses the museum was originally built in 1914 as the Swift Creek Train Station, and sat along the CNR tracks about two kilometers north of Valemount. In 1927, when the town of Swift Creek ceased to exist, it was moved to “Valemount,” even before Valemount was a village. The station was permanently closed by CN in 1981, and sat abandoned and unkempt until 1987, when it was purchased for a dollar by the Valemount Historic Society. The society organized a volunteer workforce to move the building to its present location on Main Street, behind the Valemount Library, and worked for five years to restore the building to its original charm.
Celebrations this year will kick off with the traditional Canada Day celebrations next Tuesday, from 11 am to 3 pm. There will be activities and games for the kids, entertainment and a concession with chili and hot dogs, and complimentary cake and ice cream will be served around 1 pm. The Society will also have a small retail space featuring the 100th Anniversary commemorative pin, as well as a few other nice, affordable retail surprises, says museum administrator Sue Marko. Funds from the sale of the pin as well as the expanded selection of historical and educational information will go towards maintaining and expanding the museum and activities.
Other events throughout the summer will include Children’s Day, which will run for 10 weeks on Thursdays, from 1-3 pm, starting on July 3rd. Marko says the Society received a grant from the Valemount Community Forest to expand the program this year, giving children aged 5 to 12 a free opportunity to do some crafts and educational activities at the museum.
The museum is hoping to iron out a joint birthday party with the Library on July 19, and will be hosting an art show, starting with a free opening on July 26, from noon to 2 pm. The travelling exhibition from Two Rivers Gallery will be in Valemount until August 18th, and this year features landscapes from Allan Farmer, who died suddenly in March. Farmer worked in the logging industry in Northern BC, and leaves behind a compelling document of life in the Central Interior of BC. On July 17th, Maureen Faulkner will present an art workshop in Farmer’s style.
Also on the docket this summer is a Senior’s Social, set for August 16th, and a member’s social in mid-September. Appraiser Ted Pappas of Antiques Roadshow fame will be back in Valemount to value your treasures on September 6th and 7th.
The museum is open Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm in June and September. Throughout July and August it is open from 10 am to 8 pm weekdays and 10 am to 5 pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
UPDATE: The joint anniversary/birthday party with the Valemount Library is now confirmed for August 9th.