Sept 29 at 4pm at the Inlet Theatre, Don’t Miss the Venosta Vintage Hour Radio Show

Radio Show - this one is in the ad


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On Sunday, September 29, 4pm at the Inlet Theatre make sure you do not miss, The Venosta Variety Hour Radio Show.

   Rebel Haunt Theatre along with some dedicated volunteers are excited to take you back to the days before television when families would gather around the radio to be entertained by stories, ads and music. Here is the group at a dress rehearsal!


The Ioco Ghost Town Day Festivities begins in less then a week

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Ioco Days Festival – Vintage Radio Show

Sunday September 29,  at 4pm.  Inlet Theatre. Free Family Event! Radio Show - this one is in the ad

Our Annual Ioco Days Festival begins with the Venosta Variety Hour Radio Show. You’ll go back to the days before television when families would gather around the radio to be entertained by stories, ads and music.

 Ioco Ghost Town Day

Sunday, October 6th 12-4pm. Ioco Road & 1st Avenue. Free Family Event!

Enjoy a variety of activities, including pony rides and free tours of the Ioco Town site in a Model A car. There’s musical entertainment by Antique Gold and Five on a String, and site specific theatre by Rebel Haunt Theatre. Visit the games booths while costumed actors wander amongst the crowd and interpret local history.IOCO Ghost Town Day (7)

Dennis Hewson's magic show

Dennis Hewson’s magic show

Pumpkin Decorating

Pumpkin Decorating

12 ft. Corn in the Heritage Garden!




This Year our heritage garden has been very successful despite this summer’s exceedingly dry weather. We have gotten a fair amount of fresh produce  including lettuce, tomatoes, rhubarb, and hopefully in the near future, squash. So far the most impressive spectacle in our little garden is the corn which has grown to an impressive hight of 12 ft. From what we hear this is a fairly unusual hight for corn in our area! The corn we have growing in our garden is a species of white corn and kernels on the cob do not grow in the usual rows, instead they grow at random all over the ear. Apparently this corn is not of the sweetest variety and can be quite bitter to the taste. The variety of corn grown in the garden is known as Country Gentleman, a heritage variety of corn introduced around 1890 and widely grown well into the 1950’s.  In the 1800’s and well into the 1900’s, white corn was eaten at the dinner table because it was sweet flavoured while yellow corn was starchy and used as animal feed.  Extensive hybridization has changed that such that white corn is now rarely grown while the sweetest corn is now yellow corn.  Country Gentleman was also known as a “shoepeg” corn because there were many kernels in the cob tightly packed but in irregular rows.  Depending on the quality of soil, Country Gentleman could grow anywhere from 9 feet to 12 feet high, be multi-stemmed and bear up to 3 cobs per plant.  The quality of soil was important as it was found that in certain areas the corn would grow but not be that sweet.  The corn was considered good for roasting, and once the technology was available, used for canned or frozen corn kernels.  It is a long season corn (takes about 3 to 4 months to mature).  The cobs that we grew were quite tasty, reminding the gardener of white corn that used to be available many years ago.  This corn definitely grew well for our museum garden, the hot dry summer certainly helped.  If you look carefully at the picture of the corn in the garden, you will see that a few cobs have red silk – this is a sign that cobs are ready for pollination.  When the cob is ripe, the silk fades to brown.  Here is a picture of the cobs, note that the kernels are not in neat rows: 

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  Not only did we grow outsized corn, we grew two other outsized plants.  If you look at the picture, the plant with the huge plant that is in front of our Executive Director is Havana Tobacco; and although hard to see right behind the havana Tobacco is the  Thousand Headed Kale




Havana Tobacco was grown in home gardens in the Vancouver area for many years back to the early 1900’s.  It was considered to be the best tobacco for growing in the home garden.  It was used to make cigars or chewing tobacco or was grown as an ornamental plant – note the large leaves and pink flowers.    Tobacco leaves when boiled in water create a very effective insecticide, and of course nicotine when extracted from tobacco leaves has been used to fumigate greenhouses for over 150 years.  For our tobacco, we started the seedlings in February indoors and grew them under lights until June.  For the first few months they were very tiny plants, and grew quite slowly.  When we planted them outside in June, they had only 3 leaves and we openly wondered whether they would grow successfully.  However, in July their growth accelerated and by September we had full grown tobacco for harvest.  Because we allowed the plants to bloom, the leaves were not considered suitable for drying to make tobacco.  However, if we had cut off the blooms, the leaves would have grown even larger than achieved in our garden and in late September we would hang the stalks of leaves in a dry room for several months to make cigar tobacco or in a fire heated room for several weeks to make chewing tobacco.  Considering the effort needed to grow and cure the tobacco, it was probably a select few who grew tobacco – far easier to buy it ready to use. 

Thousand Headed Kale is no longer available in Canada, so the museum had to search outside of Canada for the seeds.  Our research showed that it was offered for sale in Vancouver up until about the 1930’s and then disappeared.  This kale is a plain leafed kale that is very prolific and winter hardy; in fact frost and snow improve its flavour.  Since it was winter hardy, it could be grown through our winters to provide green leaves for harvest from February through to April.  It was also grown for use as animal feed – dairy and poultry farmers could use it to feed their cows in the winter months since it was ready to be harvested in the late fall to winter months.  Although research shows that Kale is a very nutritious vegetable, nowadays the flavour of Kale does not excite many people to eat it, especially when fast food is so readily available.  In growing this vegetable one is reminded how our food supply has changed so much from 100 years ago – we are able to get fresh food year round.  But once upon a time, we could only eat what we grew and a vegetable that survived our winters would be very valuable in the garden.  Here is another picture of Thousand Kale in our garden – it has grown to about 6 feet in height and shows no sign of stopping – to the right of the TH Kale, you will notice a few plants of the more familiar green curled Kale, what a difference in size: thousand headed kale


Last Day to See Our Lego Display

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Today is the last day to come down and see our summer Exhibit “Yesterday and Tomorrow!”  The exhibit features a model of Port Moody’s possible future and a hand crafted replica of 1930’s Clarke Street built by Jim Buckley.The very popular display of what Port Moody might  look like in the year 2020 is made entirely of Lego, and was built especially for us by the Vancouver Lego Club. The wonderful Lego city will be taken down tomorrow so hurry and catch your last opportunity to see it! We are open today until 4 pm.


Our Ioco Day festival begins September 29th! Come join in on the fun!

Radio Show - this one is in the ad

Sunday September 29th, come enjoy

Our Vintage Radio Show!

Get ready for some good old-fashioned tunes and fun times. On Sunday, September 29th, 2013, the annual Ioco Days Festival will begin with an Vintage Radio Show at the Inlet Theatre in Port Moody. Rebel Haunt Theatre along side some great volunteers will be performing stories from Port Moody’s Past! Stay tuned to find out when and where it will be broadcast!

Radio Show - this one is in the ad

 On Sunday, October 6th



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Come to the Ioco Townsite ( Ioco Road and 1st Avenue) on Sunday October 6th, 2013 and be delighted by Model A car tours around Ioco, magic shows, and  pony rides !  This is a free family event. There will be a variety of games and crafts for kids to play, as well as many booths set up by societies around the Tri-Cities! Throughout the day you will be able to listen to two great bands, Antique Gold and 5 On a String Bluegrass band as well as be entertained by local magician, Dennis Hewson.

Rebel Haunt Theatre, will also be there to perform “Home Town”,  a site-specific, audience-interactive play set in the 1930s. The audience moves with the actors through the Ioco townsite; exploring various locations, meeting characters and watching the story unfold. The show incorporates stories from the history of Ioco and Port Moody.

“Home Town” is a great way for locals to get a sense of the community that Ioco residents enjoyed in the 1930s. Written using information and stories from the old “Ioco Times” newsletter, the characters evoke the feeling of the good old days as they explore the remaining heritage buildings and environment at the Ioco town.

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