The Summer of Launches

A crossfade showing a historical image of the Brilliant train station imposed onto a modern image of the area

The solstice has passed and summer is officially upon us. For On This Spot, that means the launching of content in dozens of new cities and towns across the country. As Covid-19 restrictions lift in many of the provinces, now is the perfect time to get outside and explore the history of our Canadian communities. 

It has been a busy spring as we have worked hard to prepare for the launches of over 30 new communities on the On This Spot app and website. Already, we have launched tours and then-and-now photo sets in Castlegar, BC, Fort Macleod, Alberta, and Lacombe, Alberta. Content for many more communities will be launching in the following weeks, so stay tuned for more updates.

Our Castlegar content features over 50 historical photos and a 12-stop walking tour which explores the rich history of the Doukhobor community that have for over a century lived and farmed peacefully in this area.  In Fort Macleod, over 150 photos have been launched, along with two fantastic walking tours that delve into the history of the North West Mounted Police and the early businesses, community members, and organizations which called Fort Macloed’s historic downtown home. 

In Lacombe, a brand new walking tour compliments over 75 new then-and-now photo sets. App users who embark on this tour will learn about the intrigues and dramas which took place in this small town on the prairies: fires, kidnappings and even murders. Users will travel back in time to explore the hardships and triumphs of building a community in the early days of settlement in Alberta. 

Along with these towns, historical photos will be launching soon in Lethbridge, Red Deer, and Medicine Hat, and we are updating our Calgary content with dozens of new photo sets. In BC, the island communities of Comox, Cumberland, and Courteney are ready to go with over 100 photos between them, and new content is in the works for Abbotsford, Aldergrove, Chilliwack, White Rock, and Mission.

By the time July hits, we expect to have launched a major project in the South Okanagan, with photos and a historical tour stretching throughout the eight communities of Peachland, Summerland, Naramata, Penticton, Kaleden, Okanagan Falls, Oliver and Osoyoos. Visitors and locals to the region will be able to learn about the fascinating history of this unique region, from the early First Nations history to the stories of the Fur Brigade Trail, the early orchards, the growth of the wine industry, and the coming of the Kettle Valley Railway.

To the east, On This Spot has been updating our Toronto content with new photos and tours for the diverse neighbourhoods of Little Italy and Chinatown. We are also working on launching content in Aylmer, King Township, Dickinson Square in Manotick, and, in Nova Scotia, a driving tour in Albert County, where we will tell the story of the Acadians.  

It is an exciting time for On This Spot, with even more content in the works and a busy summer ahead. We are looking forward to continuing our exploration of Canadian history in more and more diverse places across the country. And, as always, we are looking forward to sharing it all with you!

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