So much to enjoy at RiverFest this weekend
Take a historic harbour tour
New Westminster’s historic and contemporary connection to the working Fraser River has always been strong and significant. Join local historian Archie Miller and Port Metro Vancouver staff for a fully narrated tour aboard the MV Native, a replica 19th-century paddlewheeler. You’ll never look at the river the same way again.
The hourly tours will take place Saturday, Sept. 29 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (last departure), rain or shine. Tickets are $5 for adults and $2 for kids, and can be purchased at the Fraser River Discovery Centre prior to the RiverFest weekend or on the dock, below the Inn at the Quay, the day of the tours. All proceeds will benefit the Fraser Alumni Association for leadership and maritime education programs for sea cadets. This family-friendly attraction has been very popular in previous years and is sure to sell out, so get your tickets early.
The Lucille Johnstone Workboat Parade
Always a crowd pleaser, this signature event is named after Lucille Johnstone, whose nickname “Tugboat Annie,” was the product of a 45-year career with the towing industry on the Fraser. She also made many remarkable achievements dedicated to community service. In her honour the workboats of the Fraser, which play an important role in moving cargo and ships throughout Port Metro Vancouver, will set aside their duties and gather in front of the Westminster Quay boardwalk to dazzle spectators with their amazing strength and agility. Start: about 3:30 p.m.
Special film screenings
From breathtaking beauty to heart-wrenching devastation to lifeblood connections, the following presentations will foster a stronger understanding about the importance of our river systems.
11:30 a.m. - Photos of the Fraser with renowned archaeologist and photographer Rick Blacklaws. Rick will feature the breathtaking beauty of the Fraser River from its upper reaches to the lower estuary and will preview his recent work complete and offer photography tips on using your digital camera.
1:30 p.m.— Midway Island - Kelowna-based cinematographer and photographer Jan Vozenilek began his current cinematic journey with a surprising invitation that turned into a lifetime project and reels of stunning ﬁlm footage. As part of a ﬁlm crew working on the remote island of Midway Atoll in the North Paciﬁc, Jan documented an ongoing, horriﬁcally symbolic environmental tragedy affected by humans who live thousands of kilometers away. He paints a vivid picture of a remote island covered in toothbrushes, cigarette lighters, combs and other swirling garbage. It’s home to millions of albatrosses that cannot distinguish between plastic trash and their traditional seafood fare. He explains why this is happening and what we can do about it.
4:10 p.m. — Watch Discovery Channel’s Industrious and take a behind the scenes tour of Port Metro Vancouver and the cargo we trade with countries all over the world. Learn how logs are exported, everyday goods are imported and the work required to move thousands of passengers on cruise ships heading to Alaska!
How to Get Here
Patrons to RiverFest are encouraged to take transit, walk or bike to the event. Westminster Quay Boardwalk is a 5-minute walk from the New Westminster SkyTrain station. RBC Plaza 88 is providing a Bike Valet service to encourage people to cycle to the event and park securely. If you do need to drive there will be free parking in the city’s Parkade on Saturday only (9-6), accessible off Columbia at 6th and 4th Streets and Rotary Club is collecting donations for parking in Inn at the Quay/River Market west lot.
During the Spring of each year the City of New Westminster holds a contest for elementary schools to create an environmentally-related poster. The winners and a selection from the 2012 Composting: Getting down to Earth themed posters will be on display during RiverFest at the Fraser River Discovery Centre. Stop by to see the work of the generation of artists.