Historic Dunvegan

VISIT ALBERTA’S HISTORIC SITES AND MUSEUMS: CENTRAL AND NORTHERN ALBERTA

With only a few weeks left in the official visitor season for Alberta’s historic sites, museums, interpretive centres and archives, there is still time for you and your friends and family to hit the highway and discover the fascinating stories from Alberta’s past. But don’t fret if you didn’t make it out this summer — some sites are still open year-round!

VS-2Victoria Settlement

Discover history on the North Saskatchewan River along the Victoria Trail, where Reverend George McDougall founded a Methodist Mission to the Cree in 1862. This is where the Hudson’s Bay Company established Fort Victoria in 1864 to trade with the local natives. The Mission and Fort became the nucleus for a Métis community whose river lots extended six miles along the bank of the river. (more…)

Spring is in the air! Have you started planning your summer vacation?

Historic Dunvegan 2013 Summer Events

Factor's House, Historic Dunvegan

Factor’s House, Historic Dunvegan

Last fall (2012), I had meetings with the Municipal District of Spirit River and also had the opportunity to visit Historic Dunvegan Provincial Park. What a beautiful place to explore! Located approximately one hour north of Grande Prairie and fifteen minutes south of Fairview, this park offers camping, a walking trail that meanders along the Peace River, a Provincial Historic Site and stunning views of the Dunvegan Bridge. With a Visitor Centre acting as a gateway to the Provincial Historic Site portion of the park (of which, portions are also designated as a Provincial Historic Resource) interpretive staff provide guided tours of the historic buildings. If you time your visit carefully, you might even get to experience one of their special events. See below for more information.

Interior, Factor's House, Historic Dunvegan. Do you remember hearing the saying “Sleep tight” when you were a child?  While it’s not known for sure, many believe that the saying originated with the use of rope beds such as this.  A person would have to tighten the ropes of the bed every so often, otherwise the ropes might loosen and cause the person to fall through to the floor in the middle of the night.  Possibly as a reminder to tighten the ropes, the saying: “Good night, sleep tight” came into being.

Factor’s House, Historic Dunvegan (Interior)  Do you remember hearing the saying “sleep tight” when you were a child? While it’s not known for sure, many believe that the saying originated with the use of rope beds such as this. A person would have to tighten the ropes of the bed every so often, otherwise the ropes might loosen and cause the person to fall through to the floor in the middle of the night. Possibly as a reminder to tighten the ropes, the saying: “Good night, sleep tight” came into being.

Historic Dunvegan is a significant part of Alberta’s heritage because of its connection to the operations of the North West Company and Hudson’s Bay Company in the Peace River District, for being an example of early architecture in Alberta and for the archaeological resources located at the site. To learn more about the significance of Historic Dunvegan and its history, read its listing on the Alberta Register of Historic Places.

Historic buildings that you could tour when at Historic Dunvegan Provincial Park, include:

  • St. Charles Mission – The Rectory
  • St. Charles Mission – St. Charles Church
  • Factor’s House
  • Revillon Frères Store (opening July 1st)

Tours of these fully restored buildings are offered daily.

Open Hours: May 15-September 2, 2013 from 10am-5pm.

Regular admission prices: $3.00 for Adults; $2.00 for Seniors; $1.50 for Youth; Free for children 6 and under.

Attention educators and youth group leaders! Educational programs or tours can be booked anytime during the summer.

St. Charles Mission, Church and Rectory

St. Charles Mission, Church and Rectory

SPECIAL EVENTS

Canada DayMonday, July 1st, 11am-4pm. Celebrate a historical milestone at Historic Dunvegan by being part of the grand opening of a building originally constructed by the Revillon Frères free traders in 1909. Discover this significant chapter of Dunvegan’s story by exploring the building and hearing from many of the people who have helped bring it to life. The day’s festivities will also include a performance by Juno-nominated family entertainer Mary Lambert, tours of all historic buildings, games, cake and crafts.
Admission is half price!

Annual Fresh Air MarketSunday, August 4th, 11am-5pm. Experience the time-honoured tradition of trading and gathering at Historic Dunvegan’s Fresh Air Market. Shop for jewellery, gifts, and other treats – all handcrafted by artisans from the Peace Country. Costumed interpreters will be offering tours of Historic Dunvegan’s three fully restored historic buildings. Activities for the kids will be provided. Regular fees apply.

St. Charles Mission, Church, Interior

St. Charles Mission, Church (Interior)

LONG WEEKENDS

Amphitheatre Entertainment –Saturdays (May 18, June 29, August 3) at 2:00pm. Join the staff of Historic Dunvegan for a humorous and often interactive dramatic presentation. Participation by donation.

Sunday Funday – Sundays (May 19, June 30, September 1) at 2:00pm. Have some fun with our historical interpreters as they host games and activities. Participation by donation.

JULY AND AUGUST

Day Camps – Most Wednesdays in July and August, 11am-4pm. For kids aged 4-10. Have some fun in the sun, learn a new craft, play a fun game, watch movies and more! Fee: $10/child. Bring a bag lunch.

Tea Leaves & Bannock Sticks – Most Saturdays in July and August, 2pm-4pm. Learn to bake bannock (traditional Scottish/Aboriginal bread) and enjoy a cup of tea while visiting with friends, family and historic staff. Participation by donation.

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

Phone: 780-835-7150

Email: historic.dunvegan@gov.ab.ca

Historic Dunvegan website

Follow Historic Dunvegan on Facebook!

Written by: Brenda Manweiler, Municipal Heritage Services Officer

(Special thanks goes out to Stephanie McLachlan, Program Coordinator at Historic Dunvegan Provincial Park, who supplied all the summer event information.)