Prince George resident Alexa Stevens was full of concentration when she decorated her gingerbread man at the Old Fashioned Victorian Christmas at Barkerville Historic Town & Park on Dec. 10. Barkerville smashed attendance records Dec. 9-11 with 1,600 people going through the turnstiles. KAREN POWELL PHOTO

Old Fashioned Victorian Christmas provided the wonder of a traditional yuletide experience

Old Fashioned Victorian Christmas provided the wonder of a traditional yuletide experience

All the enchantment and classic Christmas charm filled the streets of Barkerville Historic Town & Park for its annual Old Fashioned Victorian Christmas.

Between Dec. 9 and 11, a record-breaking attendance of 1,600 visitors settled into the snow-laden town, and received all the wonder of a traditional yuletide experience.

It shattered the previous record of 1,100 in 2015

This number was a welcome surprise to Ed Coleman, chief executive of Barkerville,

Coleman was overjoyed with the turnout.

“Given the unprecedented impact of this summer’s wildfire activity on the tourism economy on the entire region, this overwhelming show of support from our global Barkerville community has been a very real, and gratefully accepted, holiday gift.”

In the true spirit of Christmas, admission to Barkerville’s weekend event was by donation. Both monetary donations as well as non-perishable food items were welcomed.

Due to the large number of visitors, more than 20 bankers boxes were collected. By the end of the third day of the event, nearly 1,000 pounds of non-perishable food items had accumulated and were given to the Wells Legion holiday hamper program.

Guests had a fantastic selection of activities and shopping options, which gave the historic town a magical liveliness. It was a special kind of treat to pass through the gates, as Barkerville shops and events are otherwise closed to the public during these winter months.

Visitors could ride through the streets on a sleigh and take in the beauty of the snow-covered buildings and surrounding forest.

Photo opportunities with Father Christmas in the Enchanted Forest and a whimsical reading of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol by Barkerville’s Mr. Bowron, were among the many traditional activities.

This year, a few new scenes were added to the itinerary.

On Dec. 10, the Q City Singers sang old-fashioned Christmas carols to a standing-room-only audience, delivering festive melodies within the delightful acoustic of the Wesleyan Methodist Church.

In addition, a Quesnel Junior School brass band performance was held in St. Saviour’s Anglican Church on Dec. 11.

Guests could enjoy baked goods and cookie decorating at Goldfield Bakery’s gingerbread workshop.

Elegantly printed greeting cards and gift ideas gave shoppers the opportunity to purchase items with a special antique flair.

The Shamrock Lift & Tube Run was also open just outside the gates of Barkerville, offering a great rush of fun and laughter for friends and family.

As one of western-north America’s largest heritage attractions, Barkerville is a place our community takes great pride in. Perhaps the success of this year’s Old Fashioned Victorian Christmas can be one we attempt to beat every year.

Just Posted

Educational Family Day fun at the Quesnel Museum and Archives

The museum provided games, scavenger hunts, snacks, a dress-up chest and free admission

Province announces $100-million grant funding for Northwest communities

The Northern Capital and Planning Grant will go to four regional districts and 22 municipalities

Quesnel ringette player excited to help Team B.C.

Katie Young will play centre for the squad at 2019 Canada Winter Games

Ranch Musings: What a wonderful long weekend in Williams Lake

Columnist David Zirnhelt is feeling hopeful after attending the Young Agrarians mixer

Editorial: The best of intentions

Laying out a plan doesn’t mean it happens quickly

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

Ammonia leak shuts down curling club in Nelson

It’s not yet clear when the leak was detected

Pavelski’s 31st goal helps Sharks top Canucks 3-2

Vancouver one point out of second NHL wild-card spot

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

B.C. couple attacked with acid, slashed with knife in Vietnam

Warning, graphic images: Man has burns on 80 per cent of his body, slashed with knife

Northern B.C. First Nation clan says ancient tools found at pipeline work site

Archeologists from the Smithsonian Institute estimate one of the stones found dates back up to 3500 years

Names keep adding to vaccine petition started by B.C. mom

Maple Ridge mom started campaign to make vaccination a condition of attending school

Most Read