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Richmond: Yours to discover during Doors Open this weekend

By Don Fennell

Published 11:10 PDT, Tue May 28, 2019

Richmond is yours to discover during Doors Open 2019.

Celebrating many of the places that make the city unique, the doors to more than 40 hidden gems will open wide on Saturday, June 1 and Sunday, June 2 to invite the public to engage in free and unique behind-the-scenes tours. These include everything from museums to places of worship and green spaces to fire halls.

This highly-anticipated 12th annual event is on each day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It’s a rare chance to explore diverse destinations. New this year, among an ever-growing list of participants, include the Brighouse Fire Hall No. 1, WildResearch Bird Observatory on Iona Island and Fuggles Warlock Craftworks.

“We have such a diverse community and history here, and with the support of community partners, this is a chance to build on relationships,” says Sarah Carlson, co-ordinator of Doors Open Richmond.

Doors Open is an initiative of the Richmond Museum Society, in partnership with the City of Richmond and supported by the B.C. Arts Council, Richmond Heritage Commission and Public Art Richmond. The concept dates back to 1984 in France where it is known as Doors Open Days. It provides free access to building not normally open to the public. The idea has since spread around the world, with varying themes.

Carlson says Doors Open Richmond is well-attended, particularly when the weather co-operates. The average number of people taking in the sites is about 16,000, with Saturday typically the most popular of the two weekend days.

Feedback has been almost universally positive, with comments ranging from, “great idea” to “great experience” and “I never knew this was here.”

Going forward, Carlson says Doors Open would benefit with something like a hop-on, hop-off bus to help visitors access more of the sites.

Click here,for details on how to register for tours.

The Doors Open team would welcome your feedback on this year’s experience by tagging the Richmond Museum on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with #DoorsOpenRichmond.

A sampling of the sites to see:

Richmond Cultural Centre

7700 Minoru Gate

Since 1993 this has been home to the Richmond Museum, Richmond Archives, Richmond Arts Centre, Richmond Arts Gallery, Richmond Media Lab and the Brighouse branch of Richmond Public Library.

Baha'i Community of Richmond

7700 Minoru Gate (Plaza)

Celebrating their 200th anniversary, visitors are invited to participate in various community-building activities.

City Hall

6911 No. 3 Rd.

On Saturday, drop by the sustainability display booth and learn how the city is tackling invasive species. Then on Sunday, participate in a guided tour of city hall.

Brighouse Fire Hall No. 1

6960 Gilbert Rd.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day, you’ll have the opportuntity to learn what it’s like to be a firefighter.

Minoru Chapel

6540 Gilbert Rd.

From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, join artist-in-residence Julie Hammond for Minoru Manifesto, a community-based arts project.

Bodhi Meditation Centre

7740 Alderbridge Way

This is your chance to experience relaxation and walking meditation while touring the facility.

Lipont Centre

4211 No. 3 Rd.

Tour the “All That Light” featuring paintings by Monica Gewurz and Farhnaz Samari.

Olympic Experience at Richmond Olympic Oval

6111 River Rd.

Relive the Games and the Olympic Experience museum featuring interactive displays and state-of-the-art sport simulators.

WildResearch—Iona Island Bird Observatory

900 Ferguson Rd.

New this year, the observatory is offering visitors live demonstrations on how it collects data from wild birds as well as identifying local birds on a guided walk through the park from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day.

Vancouver International Airport

On Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon, the airport is offering two-hour guided tours for parties of four. Meet at YVR Airport Canada Line Platform Level.

Waters Edge House Art Studio

5500 Gibbons Dr.

Meet Shirley and June to find out more about their creative process and view their collection of oil and acrylic paintings.

Yulia Radchenko Studio

7411 Ledway Rd.

Join Yulia for refreshments in her studio and enjoy her art and crafts. There will also be an opportunity for kids to participate in fun art activities.

Richmond Eastern Catholic Church

8700 Railway Ave.

With liturgical and Biblical chant music, the church is offering tours featuring question and answer sessions.

Alice Saunders Home Art Studio

8171 Fairdell Cres.

Enjoy a cup of coffee with Alice and enjoy viewing her large collectiono f acrylic and watercolour paintings, pastels and photos.

Gina Page Seawrack Press Studo

8160 Fairdell Cres.

Discuss printmaking with Gina and view her drawings, cards and hand-knitted creations.

Loraine Wellman Fine Art Home Studio

8751 Fairdell Pl.

Visit the garden and studio and learn about Loraine’s creative processes.

BC Emergency Health Service Station

3999 Williams Rd.

See ambulances and the equipment uses by paramedics in their daily work.

Steves Family Farmhouse

2871 Steveston Hwy.

Meet the Steves and tour parts of the restored farmhouse while exploring heirloom seed gardens and viewing historical objects including antique farm equipment.

Open Art Studio

3171 Chatham St.

Visit Adrienne’s studio to view expressionistic, abstract paintings and enjoy plein air work in acrylic on canvas.

Steveston Museum

3811 Moncton St.

Enjoy live music while joining local artists as they create and display paintings, drawings and photos in Town Square Park with Steveston’s Lighthouse Collective.

Steveston Tram

4011 Moncton St.

Board the newly-resetored 1220 Tram Car and step back in time as costumed interpreters share stories of the daily passengers from yesteryear.

Steveston Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre

4255 Moncton St.

Learn the history and traditions of Steveston’s Japanese Canadian community through exhibits, demonstrations and interactive activities.

Steveston Hub

201-3800 Bayview St.

New this year, the newly-opened Steveston Hub invites you share a Steveston story as they collect and build a narrative of the community.

Britannia Shipyards National Historic Site

5180 Westwater Dr.

Discover a wealth of activities that help tell the stories of the people who lived and worked at Britannia.

Branscombe House

4900 Steveston Hwy.

Pick a colour and join in weaving a place setting for the picnic table.

London Heritage Farm

6511 Dyke Rd.

See the exquisitely-furnished rooms in the London family 1890 farmhouse.

Finn Road Studio and Garden

9811 Finn Rd.

New this year is the opportunity to bike or drive to the Slough District to visit Steve Bridger’s picturesque painting studio and garden.

Fuggles Warlock Craftworks

103-11220 Horseshoe Way

New this year, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day, the production facility is offering tours to learn the science behind brewing beer.

Lingyen Mountain Temple

10060 No. 5 Rd.

Take a tour and learn about the temple’s collection of 3,000-plus Buddha statues. Refreshments will be served between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. daily.

Az-Zahraa Islamic Centre

8580 No. 5 Rd.

Tour the sacred prayer-hall and learn about the beliefs and practices of Islam through demonstrations of the Muslim prayer.

Richmond Mosque BC Muslim Association

12300 Blundell Rd.

Tour the mosque and experience the Holy Month of Ramadan first-hand. This year, there is a focus on how fasting in Ramadan teaches patience and compassion.

Museum at the Sherman Armoury

5500 No. 4 Rd.

Explore exhibits of uniforms and see edged weapons dating back to the First and Second World Wars.

Richmond Ismaili Jamatkhana

4000 May Dr.

Join the tour and learn about the diverse and pluralistic nature of Islamic architecture.

Phoenix Perennials

3380 No. 6 Rd.

Celebrate pollinators in your garden with special displays on plants, native bees, honeybees and butterflies.

Nanaksar Gurdwara Gursikh Temple

18691 Westminster Hwy.

Guided tours of the inner sanctuary will be offered every half hour starting at 10 a.m., where visitors can observe the reading of the holy Sikh scriptures and try langar (traditional vegetarian Punjabi food).

Richmond Nature Park

11851 Westminster Hwy.

Visit the nature park for adventurous family fun, and explore through themed activities and guided walks.


BCIT Aerospace Campus

3800 Cessna Dr.

Tour the 40,000 square foot hangar on Saturday and see the fleet of light piston, turboprop, corporate and jet transport aircraft including various helicopters. Call 604-276-4300 by noon May 29 to pre-register as space is limited.

Artefact Storage Warehouse

7080 River Rd.

The city’s artefact collection includes over 20,000 objects reflecting the city’s past and present.

Call 604-276-4300 to pre-register as space is limited for the Saturday and Sunday tours.

_Gulf of Georgia Cannery

12138 Fourth Ave.

Celebrate the cannery’s 125th anniversary and visit the new exhibit.

Call 604-664-9009 to pre-register for tours both days at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Wild Sweets

12191 Hammersmith Way

Take a behind-the-scenes look into the artisan small-batch cocoa bean-to-bar chocolate making.

Pre-register online as space is limited for tours Saturday and Sunday at 10 a.m. and noon.

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