Vancouver Centennial Plaque #21 – Hastings Park


131 Miller Drive


Livestock Building, Hasting Park


Found, but kept in the PNE Archives. There is a Places That Matter plaque though



Hastings Park, 160 acres, was created in 1889 and the Vancouver Exhibition Association held its first Fair in 1910. In 1946, Hastings Park and the VEA became Exhibition Park and the Pacific National Exhibition respectively. The annual parade, Miss PNE Pageant and Timber Show are long time popular events.”

Credit: PNE Archives

In 1888, the City Council asked the province to grant 160 acres of land to Hastings Townsite for a new park. In 1890, the British Columbia Jockey Club leased 16 acres of that site for horseracing. In 1910, the first annual agricultural fair was held and, in 1926, HappyLand opened.

The Hastings Racecourse, the PNE Fair and Playland are all still in operation today.

Credit: PNE Archives

The plaque was originally installed on the north side of the Livestock Building, then moved to the south side when the building was painted. Before the 2010 Winter Olympics, there was lots of construction going on, so the plaque was removed and placed in storage for safekeeping. There is a Places That Matter plaque up though.

Interestingly, the original draft text was:

“In 1888, Hastings Park was created on 160 acres. A half racetrack existed in 1890 and the first Vancouver Exhibition was held in 1946. In 1946, the park was renamed “Exhibition Park” and the fair, “The Pacific Exhibition”. Early distinctions included North America's first egg laying competition and Canada's first parachute jump.”

Credit: Vancouver Centennial Commission, Historic Plaque Program – list and documentation plaques 1-49 (June 18, 1986). Courtesy of Vancouver Archives

The “first egg laying competition” deserves some research, I think!

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