This year’s Canada Day was the biggest day in the Port Moody Station Museum’s history, with almost 4000 visitors. Three staff members and four volunteers took about 500 photographs.
Our Canada Day started at eight am, three hours before the festivities were to officially start. We had set up as much as we could the day before, hanging the Canadian flag bannerettes across from the Venosta railcar to Charlie’s Shed then to the Station and across the Station Platform; dragging seven display cases into the Venosta for the war memorabilia display; draping pennants inside the Venosta; sweeping and vacuuming the entire Museum; and stringing up a line of flags to go across the parking lot.
Finally on Canada Day, we had less than three hours to get the Venosta to look like a WWII Victory Train.
First of all, WWII Victory Trains were rather dull affairs.
Second, once we decided we wouldn’t be that historically accurate, we needed to figure out how to string up the bunting on the Venosta without taping or nailing anything into our 1921 railcar. (After all, museums don’t just display artefacts, they also conserve them.)
It took two staff members and three volunteers a long time, but finally it looked perfect:
Then Western Command arrived:
At ten am sharp, World War II jeeps, trucks and a lone Harley pulled into our parking lot:
Even before we opened, we had over 200 visitors.
Who wouldn’t want to be seen driving one of these?
Another view of the Museum grounds. You’ll note the tricolour half-fan on the Venosta, which was considerably easier to attach.
It’s thanks to Vince Hands of Western Command that we got such a fantastic display of vintage military vehicles. Here is Vince (on the right) with Robert Morrison.
And we can’t forget the driving force behind this year’s display: Mr. Guy Black.
From left to right, we have WWII veteran June Moreau, Mayor Joe Trasolini, Guy Black and MLA Iain Black.
Guy is a local war historian. He and two others set up a display of medals, uniforms and other war memorabilia in the Venosta.
Western Command also set up a WWI tent outside the Venosta:
The front of the tent:
Inside the tent:
Another view of the inside of the tent:
George Clark, another member of Western Command, brought his rope cannon and fired it off twice, once in the opening ceremony and then again during the official ceremony for our guests of honour.
After weeks of hard work, Museum staff finally got a chance to relax.
Here’s our exhibits assistant:
Our Programs Assistant and Research Assistant:
The Museum Assistant and Programs Assistant in a 1971 UN Jeep:
Then there was the WWII Harley:
Close-up of the Harley:
Our Collections Assistant finally taking a break:
Even the Mayor had to try it out:
Luckily the rain held off until the very end: