It's time to celebrate Rivers Day, and this year, the festivities will be at Burnaby Village Museum.
"It's going to be the main event in Burnaby and one of the biggest events in British Columbia," said Mark Angelo, founder of World Rivers Day, which highlights the value of natural waterways - streams, creeks, rivers and lakes - and the need to protect them.
The Burnaby event is on Sunday, Sept. 29, from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. There will be family activities, exhibits, interactive attractions, face-painting, a children's fishing pond, an aquatic display from the Vancouver Aquarium and owls, hawks and eagles people can see close up, Angelo added.
"There will be so many things, there will be something for everybody. It will also be a great chance to learn about Burnaby's fascinating connection to water," Angelo said.
Angelo, a retired BCIT instructor, founded B.C. Rivers Day in 1980, which then evolved into World Rivers Day, a globally recognized annual event.
This year's location is fitting, given that the museum grounds are dissected by Deer Lake Brook, which Angelo described as "one of the most productive streams in our community."
"It was one of the locales of the great salmon miracle we saw last year," Angelo said, when higher-than-usual numbers of salmon returned to urban creeks and streams for the first time in years.
According to Angelo, Burnaby is a good example of a city taking a proactive approach to protecting local creeks and streams. The city has had an "open water" policy since 1972, meaning developers had to work around streams, rather than build over them. Seventy per cent of the city's creeks and streams that existed 100 years ago are still intact today, while neighbouring Vancouver has lost all but one of its 52 salmon-bearing streams, thanks to development, Angelo said.
"Unlike Vancouver, which lost most of its streams that have been culverted and paved over, most of Burnaby's streams are still open and free flowing," he said.
The Burnaby Village Museum is at 6501 Deer Lake Ave. For more information, go to Burnaby.ca/worldriversday.
© Copyright 2013