As another season comes to a close for the Yale Historic Site, staff and volunteers are reflecting on the many successes of 2012.
Site supervisor Deb Zervini said it was one of the busiest seasons in recent years. She gives a lot of the credit to the new Sasquatch exhibit, which attracted visitors from across the area, the Fraser Valley and the Lower Mainland.
The exhibit featured everything from plaster foot casts to hair samples and other Sasquatch related items. The display was so popular that it has been extended until the end of the 2013 season.
But there is more to the Yale site than the legendary Bigfoot.
“We still have all our other historical exhibits,” explained Zervini.
The historic site is set to close on Oct. 14 and re-open in May of next year. By that time, several new displays may be ready.
Thanks to provincial funding, two new tents are being set up as part of the Living History tent city. They will be a gold commissioner’s tent and a doctor/dentist/barber tent.
“Barbers often took on the job of pulling teeth,” said Zervini, who added old dental tools will also be on display.
Other projects on the go include repairs and restoration to the exterior walls and windows of the Creighton House museum building and a large landscape restoration project complete with tree trimming, gardens, landscaping, new pathways and interpretive signage.
The biggest project for the off-season is the Ward House building and grounds.
The original house is undergoing a full conservation with the goal that it will be open to the public next year.
“We need to do this now, otherwise it may start to fall apart,” she said.
The Ward House, also known as the Shilson House, was constructed in August of 1881. The heritage value of the residence was recognized by the provincial government, and working with the Yale and District Historical Society, a conservation/restoration project is under way.
While the site is closing for the season special events are still being planned.
On Oct. 27 the public is invited to witness the return of the Creepy Crawl. The event is a Halloween-themed journey that allows people to view the old buildings by lantern light and enjoy a tour of the pioneer cemetery.
Zervini said the tour also involves live theatre as performers will appear as the spirits of local pioneers. They will talk about their lives, and deaths to tour goers.
Also on hand, during the pre-tour barbecued, will be members of the BC Ghost Hauntings Research Society who will be on hand to answer questions.
Tickets for the event can be purchased through the Yale Historic Site, in Yale at Barry’s Trading Post or in Hope at Canyon Cable.
For more information about the event, visit www.historicyale.ca.