Three Ways to Celebrate BC Day in the Tri-Cities

BC Flag BC Day Activities Tri-Cities

The BC Day long weekend is upon us once again, which means that many local residents are heading off on vacation. If you’re not one of them for whatever reason, never fear. There are plenty of ways to have fun and celebrate our fair province right here at home. Plus, just think: while everyone else is off camping, you’re at home in a real bed and you have running water and indoor plumbing. Not too shabby.

Three Ways to Celebrate BC Day in the Tri-Cities

1. Travel the Length of North Road

Port Moody is named for Colonel Richard Moody. Moody was the first Lieutenant-Governor of the Colony of British Columbia, and was responsible for selecting New Westminster as the site of the new capital. He was also a Colonel in the Royal Engineers, which built North Road to connect the capital with Burrard Inlet as a way to defend it from potential attack from the US. North Road therefore plays an important role not just in the formation of our province, but in the history of the Tri-Cities. This BC Day take the time to travel it. Drive from New Westminster all the way to the parking area at the north end of the road on your left. From there, you can take the trail that the Royal Engineers helped build back in 1859. There are also a number of other routes if you prefer, allowing you to hike all the way to the top of Burnaby Mountain. In the interests of historical purity, though, we suggest sticking as close to the original road as possible. If you prefer, you can also ride your mountain bike.

2. Visit Buntzen Lake

Buntzen Lake isn’t just a beautiful place to visit, it has also played a role in powering our province for over 100 years. In 1903 the lake was used to power Metro Vancouver’s first hydroelectric plant. To accomplish this a tunnel was excavated from Coquitlam Lake through Eagle Mountain. Coquitlam Lake was dammed and water flowed on to Buntzen Lake, and then through an outlet at the north end to two generating stations on Indian Arm. The first was built in 1903, as we mentioned, and the second was built in 1914. So take the time to hike around the lake, or go for a dip, and think of how this beautiful space doesn’t only provide recreational opportunities, but also helped to bring electricity to BC.

3. Explore Minnekhada Park

Minnekhada Park is a unique natural area in Metro Vancouver, and home to a fair bit of BC history. The lodge was built in 1934 as a hunting retreat for Lieutenant Governor Eric Hamber. It was home to to two lieutenant governors: Hamber and Clarence Wallace. It also hosted the king and queen during George Vi’s visit in 1939. The provincial government donated the lodge to the GVRD in 1984. This BC Day long weekend the lodge will be open from 1:00-4:00pm on Sunday, August 3, 2014 for a Creative Cafe. Take the chance to see the interior of this heritage building, and enjoy a hike around the park.

Happy BC Day!

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