Looking Back: This is a year for historical celebration

Coming soon, along with daffodils, and blossom trees, will be Maple Ridge’s 22nd annual Heritage Tea.

Looking Back’s Sheila Nickols cuts cake in 1992.

Looking Back’s Sheila Nickols cuts cake in 1992.

Coming soon, along with daffodils, and blossom trees, will be Maple Ridge’s 22nd annual Heritage Tea.

On Saturday, April 5, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., the Maple Ridge Historical Society will be welcoming people who care about the heritage of Maple Ridge to the Seniors Activity Centre at 12150 – 224th Street. You don’t have to be born here or have attended school here, to attend. All you need is an interest in our past and the people who have influenced and shaped our district.

The first heritage tea in 1992 was held in St. Andrew’s United Church hall. Historical society members were overwhelmed by the number of old timers who eagerly crowded into the hall greeting their friends and chatting so loudly that the invited dignitaries could not make themselves heard.

Since then, heritage teas have been held  in a variety of halls, including Hammond Hall, Whonnock Hall, and for several years in the Arts Centre that used to stand in Memorial Peace Park.

For the past number of years, we have enjoyed the facilities of the Seniors Actitivy Centre with its large hall, kitchen space and easy access.

This year, there were no local high school reunions that we know about, but the Maple Ridge Museum is preparing its usual photo display featuring our district in the year 1964. There will also be a slide show of photos with captions that will run throughout the tea. Various Maple Ridge Museum publications will be on sale. Without fail, some people will bring in their family photos and pieces of information that will add to the museum’s growing and valuable archives.

Because of the increasing cost of food and supplies, the entrance fee for the tea will be $10 this year. What do you get for your investment? A warm welcome from the Maple Ridge Historical Society volunteers, a tasty selection of sandwiches and goodies, tea and coffee and plenty of companionship from old friends.

2014 is a year of significant anniversaries.

Pitt Meadows will be celebrating its 100th year of inauguration in April. Maple Ridge will remember its 140th year this September. The Maple Ridge Historical Society will mark its 40th year of active organization.

This year as well, the Maple Ridge Museum will celebrate its 30 years of existence in the Haney Brick and Tile manager’s house beside the Haney Bypass. Two special publications will be coming out to mark the event. One will be a reprint of Maple Ridge: A History of Settlement. The other will be volume one of reprinted Looking Back columns from when the column started in 1989, through until 1991.

For more information, call the Maple Ridge Museum at 604-463-5311.