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From Vancouver to Alaska: Berwick residents embark on a high-seas adventure

18 Island seniors set sail on the first Berwick Travel Experience
A group picture of some of the Berwick Cruisers this past May.

This past May, residents from five different Berwick locations all came together on the very first Berwick Travel Experience organized by Berwick. Departing May 25 from Vancouver, 18 residents and three Berwick team members embarked on a seven-day excursion to Alaska in what turned out to be an unforgettable experience for everyone.

Among those residents was Margaret Halvorson, a resident from Berwick Royal Oak in Victoria, who was accompanied on the cruise by her daughter Lynn Murden. Margaret enjoyed a thrilling seven-day, high-sea adventure, making many new friends and memories.

"A few of us were joined by our adult children. My daughter, Lynn, travelled from Ontario to join me. I got to spend a week with her, and she had a wonderful time! The 'kids' quickly became friends, and we mothers delighted in dancing with them in the evenings," Margaret says.

Residents from five different Berwick locations came together for the first Berwick Travel Experience. Photo courtesy of Berwick Retirement Communities.

Mike and Carol Fothergill, residents from Berwick Parksville appreciated the thoughtful details and fun and lively group from start to finish. 

"We're so grateful to Berwick for their wonderful idea and organization of the cruise. We were very impressed by the coordination and assistance provided to the residents, enabling all of them to truly thrive and enjoy themselves. Jochen, Maggie and Jeannine (three Berwick team members who accompanied the residents on the trip) were a tower of strength to the group as a whole!" said Fothergill. 

For Margaret's daughter, Lynn, the trip offered not only an opportunity to spend quality time with her mother but also connect with others with loved ones at Berwick communities across the Island.

Resident Margie, Berwick team member Jeannine and residents Carol and Mike. Photo courtesy of Berwick Retirement Communities.

"It was a lovely opportunity to meet each other, learn about their respective homes, and make new friends. It was also a great opportunity for us daughters (and one son!) to see our parents in a new, adventurous light," Lynn says. 

The seven-day trip held many memorable moments for residents, their families and the Berwick team. Highlights included sailing under the Lions Gate Bridge, educational presentations, dancing late into the evening, entertainment, delicious meals, wildlife watching and witnessing the calving of a large shard of ice from the Margerie Glacier.

Residents particularly enjoyed their time in Skagway, where they took in more of Alaska's breathtaking scenery from the comfort of their seats during a tour with White Pass Train Tours.

Berwick residents Marg and Cecilia while on tour in Skagway. Photo courtesy of Berwick Retirement Communities.

"The train trip in Skagway was magic. All of the residents enjoyed it and said that Skagway was the highlight of the trip!" says Berwick team member, Maggie Raw. "After the train trip, some of us stayed behind in Skagway to walk around. We then enjoyed dinner on the Lido deck, watched another musical performance in the theatre, and took in a beautiful sunset from the back deck of the ship as we departed."

Now that everyone has returned home to their respective communities, the word has spread about how much fun and memorable the trip was, and how excited residents are to expand their travelling horizons on the next adventure. Planning for the next adventures is already underway! 

Find more information about Berwick Retirement Communities online at or book a tour today with Berwick Comox Valley’s Community Relations Manager, Jolene Shaw and see what your life could look like at Berwick Comox Valley. Book online here or call Jolene at 250-890-2346. 

Residents Lily and Dianne with team member Maggie. Photo courtesy of Berwick Retirement Communities.