Competition was fun but fierce Sunday, Sept. 1 when Barkerville Historic Town and Park hosted the 10th Annual Williams Creek Sports Day.
Featuring a variety of gold rush games for young and old, the special event included an afternoon of competitions such as broad jump, ladies’ nail driving, greasy pole climb, tug of war, sack races, egg toss and cracker eating whistle races, presided over by Billy Barker himself.
This was the final event of Barkerville’s summer season, and some of the hours are changing for the fall season. From now until Sept. 29, exhibits, shops, eateries, accommodations are still open, but some hours are reduced or tours are offered less often, and the Visitors’ Reception Centre is now open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily (as opposed to until 6:30 p.m. during the peak summer season). Visit barkerville.ca for full details.
The next special event at Barkerville is the ninth annual Cowboy and Drover Jubilee this Friday to Sunday (Sept. 6-8).
It all gets started with a Kick-Off Social Friday night, starting at 7 p.m. at the House Hotel Saloon.
There will be cowboy poetry and musical performances by Bernadette Ducharme, Larry Krause, Gordie West, Tom Cole, Ed Wahl, Jocelyn Winterburn and Mike Holte throughout the day on Saturday.
Gordie West and Jocelyn Winterburn will share their cowboy poetry at 11 a.m. in St. Saviour’s Church, Ed Wahl will perform at 12:30 p.m. in the House Hotel, Tom Cole will sing at 1 p.m. in the Methodist Church, Gordie West will perform at 2 p.m. in the Methodist Church, and Bernadette Ducharme will sing at 2:30 p.m. in the House Hotel.
The performers will gather for an All-Artist Showcase Saturday at 5:30 p.m. at the Theatre Royal to share the stage and play together. Admission is by donation.
Following the showcase, there will be a Cowboy Dance “from 8 p.m. to late” in the Pavilion.
Sunday’s activities begin with Cowboy Church at 11 a.m. in St. Saviour’s Church. A new event this year will be the arrival of the historic re-creation of the Nam Sing Cattle Drive. The group re-creating one of Chinese pioneer Nam Sing’s deliveries of produce an other goods to Barkerville is expected to arrive on Barkerville’s main street Sunday at noon.
Sunday will also feature the Belt Buckle Raffle draw at noon. An annual fundraiser for the Cowboy and Drover Jubilee, the raffle features a custom silver buckle that includes a gold nugget inlay.
Tickets are $10 each or three for $20 and can be purchased at the Visitor’s Reception Centre, Eldorado Gold Panning, Barnard’s Express, Mason and Daly General Merchants and the House Hotel.