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B.C. Day: Brigade arrives, farm museum celebrates

Carel Jongs, a director and volunteer at the B.C. Farm Machinery and Agriculture Museum in Fort Langley, gives a final polish to an 1890 American Buggy before the B.C. Day weekend festivities begin in the historic village. The gas pump, patented in 1945, shows fuel at 19 cents a gallon.  - Natasha JONES/Langley Times
Carel Jongs, a director and volunteer at the B.C. Farm Machinery and Agriculture Museum in Fort Langley, gives a final polish to an 1890 American Buggy before the B.C. Day weekend festivities begin in the historic village. The gas pump, patented in 1945, shows fuel at 19 cents a gallon.
— image credit: Natasha JONES/Langley Times

This is the weekend that belongs to Fort Langley.

It’s Brigade Days, which celebrates one of the most important events in the history of the village, and is one of the most significant for the community as a whole.

The three days are an opportunity to celebrate the province’s birthplace with re-enactments, musket demonstrations, music and the traditional canoe brigade arrival at 1 p.m. on Monday.

Monday, Aug. 6 is B.C. Day, and represents the climax of three days of entertainment and activities of the annual Brigade Days.

The action packed weekend includes a fur trade wedding every day, tours and a fur trade game show and cook-off at 4:30 p.m. on Sunday.

The Fur Brigade will paddle to Marina Park, arriving at 1 p.m. on Monday.

They will unload their cargo of furs and hear the bagpipes and black powder salute.

The procession of re-enactors  from the river to the Big House will be followed by a fur trade wedding.

There will be an opportunity to join HBC workers, Aboriginal traders, and trappers as they swap stories, play music, and show off traditional skills. As part of Parks Canada’s 2012 Bicentennial of the War of 1812, hear the behind the scenes politics that led to Fort Langley’s establishment.

The free “Picnic in the Fort” concert and barbecue will be held on Monday evening. Entertainment will feature the Langley Music School Fiddlers with Andrea Taylor, as well as John Reischman and the Jay Birds.

A visit to BC Farm Machinery and Agriculture Museum is not to be missed.

On Monday, the museum, which is next to the Centennial Museum at 9131 King St., will be alive with the sounds of tractors, trains, and technology of yesteryear.

Visitors will be treated to free Tim Hortons coffee and donuts from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. as they listen to the chuff of live steam locomotives, the whistle of a chugging freight train, and the twinkle of heavyweight passenger car lights as the Fraser Valley G Scale Friends run garden trains all weekend.

Flat cars, box cars, tankers, and coal cars will be pulled by several engines on a portable layout.

Things to see include the Small Antique Engine Club running old gas engines, a 1909 Fairbanks Morse Engine running, rope tying demonstration, demonstrations of tomato sorting and egg grading, a windmill and wind charger running, a display of tractors, a 1919 Model TT, and a demonstration of a spinning wheel, carder, and loom.

The museum houses one of the largest collections of agricultural artifacts in the province, and unlike other museums which have hundreds of items in storage, the Farm Machinery and Agriculture Museum has its entire collection on display.

These include a recently-restored American Buggy. Built in 1890, the one-horse buggy was a luxury mode of transport that was typically used by well-to-do farmers for a trip to town or church.

The museum is operated entirely by volunteers.

Check www.bcfma.com and or email bcfm@telus.net, or call the museum at 604 888-2273.

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Community Events, September 2014

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