As part of BC Heritage Week, which began with the national Heritage Day on Monday, Feb. 16, the Cumberland Heritage Fair will take place Saturday, Feb. 21 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the CRI (Cumberland Recreation Institute, 2665 Dunsmuir).
This year’s heritage fair will be the 11th edition. It was launched by a group of community volunteers in 2003 and was modelled on the folk festival that ran from 1949 to 1958 celebrating the diverse heritage of Cumberlanders. Each year families, clubs and other organizations set up displays of antique tools, unique collections, photos, and demonstrations of crafts and folklore from the early days of Cumberland and the Comox Valley.
Heritage Canada’s theme for this year’s festivities is Main Street: at the Heart of the Community. In Cumberland, the vitality and history of Dunsmuir Avenue is abundantly obvious: from the historic buildings of the old post office (Wandering Moose Café), Tarbell’s, Leiser’s Big Store (The Patch), the Cumberland Hotel and the Waverley, to the newest businesses Purusa yoga and the Cumberland Brewing Company.
This year’s displays will include traditional embroidery from Brazil and Norway, quilters, weavers and lacemakers, antique coins, cameras and much more. There will also be performances including old time fiddle and banjo tunes and Polynesian dance. In addition the Cumberland Museum & Archives will be open by donation all day and will have a scavenger hunt for kids with prizes awarded at the end of the day.
Admission to the fair is by donation.
The Cumberland Museum & Archives is celebrating Heritage Week with two walking tours and the launch of a new exhibit.
On Friday, Feb. 20 at 4 p.m. Meaghan Cursons will lead the Village Walking Tour: a lively and engaging tour filled with facts, rumours, tragedies and tales from Cumberland’s colourful history. From the great fires and the great strikes, to lavish garden parties, wartime injustices and small pox isolation houses, the Village Walking Tour offers a glimpse into Cumberland’s unique history and folklore.
On Saturday, Feb. 21 at 1:30 p.m. Dawn Copeman will lead the Old Townsites Walking Tour, featuring Cumberland’s unique cultural histories. Jumbo’s cabin may be all that is left standing from Cumberland’s once-bustling Chinatown, but the Old Townsites Walking Tour brings the old Chinese and Japanese settlements to life while walking through the majestic forests on the edge of town.
At 4 p.m. on Feb. 21, the Museum invites friends, supporters and enthusiasts to participate in the official opening of its new photography exhibit, featuring images from Cumberland’s first photo studio, founded by Senjiro Hayashi. The studio operated from 1913 to 1929 and was located in the Willard block across the street from the old post office building. The Museum is home to over 700 glass plate negatives from the Hayashi studio, which were gathered over the last three decades from garage sales, attics, personal collections and even green houses.
The exhibit also includes old cameras and photography paraphernalia from the museum’s collection.
All day Saturday the museum will also have a display, with information and items from its collection related to the businesses of old Cumberland, in keeping with Heritage Canada’s theme for this year Main Street: at the Heart of the Community.
The museum itself will also be open by donation from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and will have a scavenger hunt for kids.
Walking tours are $10/$15.
Contact the museum to sign up in advance.