Canada Day

A time to reflect on those who make it great and celebrate our heritage

As Canada Day draws near, we again have many things we, as Canadians, should  appreciate.

And one of these ‘things’ should be our heritage. Preserving our heritage is at the top of the list when it comes to such things as our pioneers and pioneer families.

I’m not just talking about the pioneers who ploughed the fields and tilled the soil more than 100 years ago.  I’m referring to those people who, in some small or big way, have made an impact on our community.

Included could be our Citizens of the Year, our elected officials and our volunteers. Included should be those individuals who started up businesses in our town.

More than 50 years ago, this little town had a very vibrant business community (and still does today.)  Doesn’t seem that long ago, yet when you were a kid, 50 years was old.

Businesses that were “in business” years ago have left an imprint on Quesnel. Hopefully you read Bruce Steele’s column “Glimpse of History” where a record of the infrastructure and local businesses was chronicled in the Cariboo Observer.  This was in the August issues of the Cariboo Observer in 2014, a supplement with a record of the businesses that were, and still are, in Quesnel. Then and Now pictures with a short history were a  part of the presentation.  Check it out on-line in the digitized version of the Cariboo Observer.

Speaking of doing your share to preserve history, do you recall ever donating something to the museum or contributing something for an exhibit?  Were you ever involved in preparing an exhibit? We at the museum are always interested in who did what around there.

And while we are on the topic of preserving history, I would like to remind you that Quesnel Museum and Archives is very interested in collecting eulogies of Quesnel people.

If you have a loved one who has passed on, and they were part of Quesnel’s history, please contact us or bring in that eulogy so it will be preserved, not just for your family, but for the community.

While I’m still “on my soapbox” about preserving our history, I want to remind you of the Storytellers’ Tent that will be in the park on Canada Day. Join us as we enjoy stories and readings from local ‘yarnspinners’. We are still looking for people who have a local story to tell and would consider joining us for a few minutes, or an hour or so. And any who have come to Canada who would like to share their story, please consider yourself invited! We’d all like to hear your story. Call Honey if you’d care to share at  250-992-5875.

The Storytellers’ Tent will be beside the Seniors’ Tea Tent from 1 – 2 p.m. in LeBourdais Park to share stories.

Speaking of the Tea Tent, this is another Canada Day tradition. The Seniors’ Advocacy group has been hosting the Seniors Tea for several years now. This organization has managed to serve tea to several hundred seniors in our city on this occasion. Miss Quesnel candidates have helped out with escorting guests, carrying sandwiches and sweets, and doing dishes! They will be there again this year – be sure to stop by and wish them well.

Oh how I wish Gordie Perry could join us to reminisce about hockey in Quesnel, read a poem from his ‘Hockey’ book, or display the wonderful photographs he took over the years.

His “famous” picture of the Cornish Waterwheel has made its way to many different countries and homes. Oh, and the one of the walking bridge!

Drop in to the museum to see the old wooden skates  (metal blades) he donated before he and Marliss moved to Campbell River.

Gord will be sadly missed by his many friends in Quesnel and area, as we were saddened to hear of his sudden passing. A Celebration of Life will take place in Quesnel in August.

To sum it all up…one of the many things of which we should appreciate is the fact that we have the freedom to gather on such an occasion!

By the way, you may just have happened to notice – the Cornish Waterwheel on the corner of Carson Avenue and Front Street is undergoing renovations. Actually, a new ‘old’ waterwheel is being constructed.  One of the recognizable icons of our Gold Pan City!

Hope to see you as you “Pass Time” at the Museum.

Like a piano, you may not be grand …but you can be upright!

Honey Affleck is a member of the Friends of the Museum and avid amateur historian.

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