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Doors Open 2023 at Britannia Shipyards NHS

Interior of Britannia Shipyard with large white, blue and red wooden ship on top of wooden structure

During Doors Open weekend on June 3 & 4, 2023, local boatbuilder and restoration expert Dave Sharp presented a behind-the-scenes look into the new slipways and restoration project inside the historic Britannia Shipyard building.

Over 600 people visited over the weekend, as Dave answered questions about the months-long project and how the boat carriages played a pivotal role in the survival of Steveston’s fishing and boating history.

Visitors were also invited to take a closer look at the different types of wood found in shipyard, that were used for boatbuilding. Other Items on display included pieces from the original carriage itself, and caulking tools that were used in wooden boat building to ensure a watertight vessel.

Various wood and metal tools laid out on a table

For younger visitors, a shipyard building scavenger hunt was offered, taking children ages 6-12 on a journey to explore the historic building where they hunted for answers, tied maritime knots, tested their strength on the pulleys, and even found hidden salmon!

Over the weekend, a special origami activity was offered at the Murakami House, which tells the story of a Japanese boatbuilder’s family who lived in the home prior to the Second World War. Yellow irises were created by Britannia’s outstanding volunteer Mieko, who helped visitors fold their own out of yellow origami paper – a fun hands-on activity for the whole family.

Yellow paper folded into two flowers held by a woman's hand in front of marshy background

Thanks to all who visited Britannia Shipyards National Historic Site for Doors Open. Be sure to check our website and social media for upcoming programs and special events. Visit us on July 22 – 23 for the Grand Prix of Art and on August 26 – 27 for the Richmond Maritime Festival.