Sunday, August 21, 2011

Burnaby Village Museum - Part I

Tired of shopping in downtown, malls and night markets? How about go somewhere that’s completely different and fun! Burnaby Village Museum is not a bad option. It’s located on 6501 Deer Lake Avenue in Burnaby, 15 minutes from Metrotown by bus. This year (up to October 29) the admission is free since the museum is celebrating its 40th anniversary! I already visited it on June 11.

According to Wikipedia, Burnaby Village Museum is an open air museum located at Deer Lake Park. It is a reconstructed 1920s village, containing 31 full scale buildings, as well as costumed staff demonstrating traditional trades. The museum spans 10 acres of land. Some of the buildings are original heritage buildings, moved from other locations in the community and restored. Others are replica buildings, created to house specific displays and artifacts, including a 1912 B.C. Electric Railway interurban tram. The Museum is also known for the 1912 C. W. Parker Carousel, available for visitors to ride.

So, let’s go in …

First greeted by grassy cows

From 1891 until 1958 the whole Greater Vancouver area was served by a passenger tram rail system – Interurban Tram. There were five lines operated by the British Columbia Electric Railway Company:

The Central Park Line – ran between Vancouver and New Westminster via Central Park in Burnaby (

The Burnaby Lake Line – ran between Vancouver and New Westminster via Burnaby Lake

The Fraser Valley Line – ran between New Westminster and Chilliwack

The North Arm Line – ran between Marpole and New Westminster along the North Arm of the Fraser River

The Steveston Line – ran between the south end of Granville Bridge and Steveston in Richmond via Marpole (

The interurban tram system was discontinued and replaced by buses in 1958.

Now I’m in front of Interurban Tram 1223 which was in service between 1913 and 1958.

Picture of interurban trams on the busy Calgary Street, Alberta in 1915. It reflects the importance of this tram rail system back to a century ago.

C. W. Parker Carousel was built in 1912 by the C. W. Parker Company.

A 1920s barbershop which was modelled after Burnaby’s McKay barbershop that operated on Kingsway.

A typical 1920s general store in Burnaby. There was a post office with a very old style typewriter in the store.

Way Sang Yuen Wat Kee - contents of this replica Chinese herbalist's shop came from a store which operated in Victoria from 1900 to 1971. Interesting!

The original "Home Bakery" was located on Kingsway, east of Boundary Road.

Burnaby’s first bank was a Royal Bank at McKay and Kingsway which opened in July 1921. It was called the McKay B.C. Branch.

I wonder how much money people could make per month during 1920s and what portion they could contribute to the savings???

In 1920s, 4 room furnished house for rent - $23 per month. In 2010s, 4 bedroom furnished house for rent - $2300 per month!

In 1920s, 4 bedroom house for sale - $1200. In 2010s, 4 bedroom house for sale - 1 million!

If you are looking for a 3D or 4D film with lots of visual, sound and physical effects, this is not the place for you. But if you love to watch a movie with no colour and sound, welcome in ...

It's playing one of Charlie Charpin movies. Even though it's a slient movie, I could tell he's a very talented actor with good sense of humour!

In 1920s, an adult movie ticket was $0.25. Now is free! I mean for the same movie.


  1. What an interesting blog, introduced by a thought-provoking photo. The unusual wall painting of the dwellings is also a strangely modern interpretation. Something like this hieroglyphic view of a park by Swiss painter Paul Klee,
    The image can be seen at who can supply you with a canvas print of it.