Today was a long day packed full of events, and new things to see!

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The group kicked the morning off with an early, healthy, hearty breakfast at the UVic cafeteria, after which we loaded up the buses and drove down to the Victoria inner harbour. The drive took us over the top of Mt. Tolmie, where we got a gorgeous, panoramic view of the city of Victoria!
Our first stop by the inner harbour was the BC Legislature Building, where we received a detailed tour of the home of our provincial government. We learned about the history and significance of the architecture (the tiling, the stained glass, and the amazing gold gilding), the government proceedings that take place in the Chamber, and the role of the Head of State in our provincial government!
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(The crest of BC in the BC Legislature Building, the Legislature, and the group by a memorial statue out on the front lawn)
After a quick snack and an even quicker walk, the group headed across the street to the Royal BC Museum. We walked through all the displays, starting with the featured exhibit on the BC Gold Rush. Other exhibits we saw included the Woolly Mammoth, the mines, “old-town Victoria”, and the First Peoples’ exhibit!
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For lunch, we drove down to the Government House – the residence of Her Honour the Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia – and ate a delicious sandwich lunch in the beautiful gardens. Then we took a tour through the house, which was gorgeous from top to bottom! We walked through the parlour, the drawing room, and the ballroom, and admired the many, many paintings of past Lieutenant Governors. We even got to admire the downstairs restrooms, which were huge, stunning, and probably the most beautiful restrooms any of us had ever seen.
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(A corner of the downstairs (female) restroom!)
From the Government House, we took a long walk down to the Ross Bay Cemetery, where we rotated in groups through three activities: stone cleaning, stone recording, and a tour of 3 of the most famous graves. The stones we cleaned of debris and moss looked loads better after we’d carefully scrubbed them down with soap and water. While recording information from the stones, we looked for and drew symbols, then had one of our lovely guides explain them. During the tour, we visited the graves of Billy Barker, Emily Carr, and Sir James Douglas. Through all three activities, we learned the importance of remembering.
 Cleaning tombstones (1 of 2) (1)
We ate a BBQ dinner at the beach just a stone’s throw away from the cemetery, then headed back to UVic for a swim to wrap up our day. Tomorrow is the presentation day for the Provincial Heritage Fair projects, so the group will get plenty of rest tonight!
Stay tuned for updates on tomorrow’s events! 🙂
Author: Emily T.
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