Burnaby Village Museum is a historical museum on Deer Lake Avenue, British Columbia. Known for its exquisite artifacts and replicas of buildings, the museum is a one-of-a-kind exhibition.
The open-air museum opened in 1972 and offers a rich view of Canada’s preserved heritage. The intriguing look of the museum has countless stories to offer.
Each exhibit at the museum tells a tale of rich history and informs its visitors about the importance of the creativity and design behind each piece.
Dive into the past at the Burnaby Village Museum with fun activities and much more to explore! Here’s all you need to know about the famous Burnaby Village Museum.
1. History Of The Museum
Initially a 4.3-acre museum, it grew yearly with new exhibits and artifacts restored.
The museum’s opening hosted only a general store, a manor house, a blacksmith shop, an ice cream parlor, a Chinese herbalist’s shop, and a few other visiting spots.
The Burnaby Village Museum was built in 1971 as a celebratory project. It aimed to create a replica of British Columbia’s heritage. The museum’s opening hosted around 15,000 people within the first three days.
In 1984, the name changed from ‘Burnaby Heritage Museum‘ to ‘Burnaby Village Museum. ‘ The Museum was also a movie set for ‘Huckleberry Finn and His Friends ‘.
It has horses on display along with other animals. The Century Park Museum Association ran the museum till 1990.
An Interurban Tram (1912) situated at the museum is a must-visit decorated with beautiful cherry blossoms.
2. Things To See At The Burnaby Village Museum
Experience Burnaby Village Museum at its best, with fascinating attractions to explore. The museum remains open seasonally, usually in summer and during heritage Christmas.
One gets to experience life during the 1920s and wonders what it must have been like with not many electronic gadgets lying around!
2.1. The C.W Parker Carousel Rides
Built in 1912, the vintage Carousel is a paid attraction in the Burnaby Village Museum, with 41 horses having unique names for each. The rides are perfect for kids and are so much fun!
Though there is no fee for entrance into the museum, the Carousel rides have a fare.
2.2. The Heritage General Store
The General Store in Burnaby is a replica of past stores. You would find everything here, from coffee beans to general grocery items!
2.3. Elworth House
2.4. Ice Cream Parlour
The famous parlor offers the best ice creams for sweet tooths! With a 1920s theme, the parlor offers some amazing spots to capture pictures. It serves more than ice creams, from snack meals to hot coffee on a winter day.
2.5. Drug Store
One gets to witness how drugstores were back in the 1920s. Burnaby Village Museum has done an excellent job of preserving the culture and vibe of the good old days.
3. What Can You Do At The Museum?
Make your way into the old stores with antique pieces, or walk down the historic houses, schools, and a church. Heritage Museum is the best for families and kids, while the carousel rides make it to the top for little ones.
The museum has a relaxing ambiance with beautiful holiday decorations and Christmas lights.
You can visit the museum yourself or with your group. The museum offers two pre-booked group tours – the Discovery Tour and Transportation Tour.
3.1. Discovery Tour
Experience the history of Burnaby Village Museum with the best guides and get all you need to know about the important buildings with this tour. Make sure to pre-book this tour to enjoy it at its best.
3.2. Transportation Tour
This tour highlights the timeline of transportation from old cars to locomotive engines. You also get a chance to visit the oldest steam locomotive!
With venue rentals, you can pre-book a perfect proposal at this heritage site. The wedding package offers photo sessions and a rented discovery room with the Carousel Pavilion.
The museum offers offline and online virtual programs for school kids on Zoom. Some famous programs offered by the Heritage Museum are:
3.3. Museum Detectives
A fun experience as detectives for grades 5-10, the program offers a scavenger hunt in the Chinese herbalist shop. This is a virtual program that usually lasts for about 2 hours.
3.4. Navigate the Neighbourhood
Dive deep into the Burnaby Village Museum neighborhood and experience the vast community and general store with this program.
3.5. Winter Wonder
The Winter Wonder is a self-guided tour that includes a carousel ride. One gets to explore the vintage buildings and the rich heritage of Burnaby Village Museum. It takes place from November to December.
3.6. Eerie Illusions
With entertainers in costumes and live performances, Eerie Illusions is a thrilling experience during Halloween. The lively experience with vibrant lights and soulful performances is bound to amaze you.
3.7. Snack At The Little Cafe
With sandwiches, mini doughnuts, unique combinations of salads, and freshly ground coffee, the little cafe is the perfect spot to snack after a tiring day. You can also donate at the donation box.
3.8. Gaze At The Smiths
The workshop staff demonstrated how metal smithing was done in the past and watched them use the tin to make household items. You might also get to do some good hands-on activities at the workshop and learn about the well-preserved heritage.
4. Interesting Facts About The Burnaby Village Museum
- About 50,000 artifacts resembling the 1920s theme all around the buildings and exhibits, with each artifact varying in size.
- The museum hosted around 15,000 visitors within three days of opening.
- The ice cream parlor can accommodate around 75 people.
- The Seaforth School at Burnaby Village Museum was once a small room with only 20 students. Currently, it is one of the famous exhibits in Burnaby.
- The Jesse Love Farmhouse is the oldest building in the Burnaby Village Museum.
- The Carousel at the museum is over 100 years old! Yet it functions perfectly due to the strict regulations and good maintenance while riding it.
- The Burnaby Village Museum was once a stop for the Olympic Torch Relay.
5. Burnaby Village Museum on Special Days
The museum hosts events on special occasions and national events.
5.1. Victoria Day
The events of Victoria Day take place in May, bustling with Tiddley Cove Morris dancers on Hill Street. The Queen Victoria Procession and the BC regiment band followed that. One also gets to do craft activities at the real estate office.
5.2. British Columbia Day
With musicians performing and a vibrant scavenger hunt, British Columbia Day is a must-visit event at the museum.
5.3. Labour Day
You get to participate in free activities during the summer season. Some events, such as the ‘Working People’ documentary and ‘Century of Service’, educate you about the laborers from the past decade.
5.4. Canada Day
Canada Day is celebrated with unique activities such as the – Coastal Wolf Pack and Canada Day Mini Cupcakes. It is a fun experience at the Burnaby Village Museum.
Heritage Christmas is celebrated in full swing with fairy lights and decorations. The event usually takes place from November to January at the Heritage Museum.
Halloween is another widely celebrated event at the Burnaby Village Museum with a haunted theme and live entertainment. Eerie Illusions is hosted during Halloween with themed decorations and sound effects.
6. Tips Before You Visit The Museum
- The museum gets crowded, especially during the holiday season. If you are not a fan of a huge crowd, visit during less popular times.
- Look out for the opening dates to avoid disappointment when you visit the Burnaby Village Museum. Some of the exhibits and buildings remain closed at certain times.
- Maintain cleanliness and make sure not to litter around the exhibits.
- Most museums are outdoors, so be prepared for the cold weather.
- Take a tour guide to know the depths of the museum, or spend your time discovering it yourself.
7. Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is It Worth Visiting The Heritage Museum?
With free entry and a must-see heritage site, the Burnaby Village Museum is among the best places to visit in British Columbia. The Burnaby Village Museum reviews are the most positive ones out there.
2. How Big Is The Burnaby Village Museum?
Starting with just 4.3 acres of land, the museum is now a 10-acre area filled with over 38 exhibits. The journey would take around 2-3 hours, with fun-filled activities and rare treasures.
3. When Is The Burnaby Village Museum Open?
The Burnaby Village Museum remains open seasonally, usually from May to October and during Heritage Christmas from noon. It is also open during the local schools’ spring break.
Entry to the Burnaby Village Museum is free, another reason to visit the Heritage Museum. The carousel rides are to be purchased at the museum.
4. How Do You Get To The Museum?
You can get to the Burnaby Village Museum by transit or by vehicle. The museum offers a free undercover car park to visitors.
The museum is located at 6501 Deer Lake Avenue, BC. You can take the #144 SFU bus from Metrotown Station or the #144 Metrotown bus from Sperling Station.
5. Are Pets Allowed At The Museum?
Dogs or any pets are not allowed at the Burnaby Village Museum. Service animals are, however, allowed for convenience.
6. Is Outside Food Allowed?
The museum allows you to get your food and enjoy your time there. Make sure to munch on the areas outside the exhibits. You can choose your picnic spots and enjoy your time.
Burnaby Village at Deer Lake is rated as one of the brilliant museums in Metro Vancouver. The small historic town is a worthwhile museum, especially during spring break and the heritage Christmas season.
Various special events and summer camps are hosted during the season, such as the – Spring Break Scavenger Hunt and Museum Detectives. You can also explore the Burnaby Village Museum tours.
The museum is an informative yet fascinating place for generations to come. The amazing displays take a peek back at the past. With free entry and free parking, the museum is no less than a little town with liveliness and authenticity.
So explore the Burnaby Village Museum with curiosity and find history come to life!