Sooke Lions set out to save museum’s steam donkey

Museum clears out land to build additional displays and storage

The Sooke Region Museum has cleared land on its property and received a donation of three large logs in preparation for some exciting new projects.

Lee Boyko, executive director at the Sooke Region Museum, said that with the support of the Sooke Lions Club, volunteers, donor and the provincial government, the museum will be refurbishing the historic steam donkey, plus building additional storage and displays for large industrial artifacts, including those that represent logging.

“Over the next few months, we will be adding onto our existing storage pavilion, removing the existing blacksmith shop and building a new storage building,” said Boyko. “We want to try and keep care of the objects we have in our collection and the steam donkey is unique piece of equipment.”

He explained that the new building will also include exterior facing exhibits that will help tell the story of logging in the region.

The construction of the storage facility is expected to be completed by March, but the restoration of the donkey will take longer.

Al Beddows, a Lions member and president of the museum, said the Lions have a very close connection with the museum and thought it would be a nice project for the members to restore the donkey.

“It’s an old piece of Sooke history, the donkey engines were used to haul the big logs out of the bush, and a group of us were quite taken back on how it’s fallen into disrepair,” said Beddows.

They found the wood the steam donkey sits on was rotting, and decided it was time to do a restoration of the whole machine.

“We’ll never bring it up to steam standards but we are hoping to put a little electric motor in there to get a few things moving for the general public,” said Beddows.

Queesto Forest Products donated the three logs that will replace the deteriorating skids the Donkey currently sits on. The Lions are also reaching for any volunteers who may have some useful skills such as in logging or working with sheet medal to come out and help with the project.

“I think it’s important for the next generation to see where we’ve come from,” said Beddows. “Sooke is very dear to me and I just think the donkey fits in with our logging past. It’s my connection to this community and I think it’s important to have some of these things on display.”

To volunteer or to find out more, please contact the Sooke Region Museum at 250-642-6351.

dawn.gibson@sookenewsmirror.com

Just Posted

Sooke Santa Run 2019 an inspiration

Loads of food for the food bank and a lot of smiles

500 pounds of turkey served at Cool Aid community Christmas dinner

Annual dinner serves hundreds of community members

VIDEO: Annual Tuba Christmas concert draws large crowd to Market Square

Over 100 tuba and euphonium players gathered to play festive tunes

Revisit Christmas past as Point Ellice House displays Victorian-era traditions

Antique bobbles, cards, decor and more are on display

Bold and brassy quintet touches down at UVic

Internationally recognized Canadian Brass performing with Victoria Symphony on Dec. 21

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

VIDEO: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Five things of note from Trudeau’s mandate letters to his ministers

Some marching orders come from the Liberal Party’s campaign, while others are new additions

Scheer’s resignation tips party into internal war over school tuition payments

The Conservatives have a Toronto convention already scheduled for April

Most Read