New and exciting north shore visitor centres
By Darrell Makin
Who wants to take a road trip? Here’s an idea! Take a drive along Highway 17 to Terrace Bay and Schreiber. Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area (NMCA), and both communities, have collaborated on the development of two new visitor centres to promote and support regional tourism.
Although the past year has been challenging for tourism, there has been a significant increase in people wanting to experience nature and the outdoors in Canada. Many families are taking to their vehicles to explore the Lake Superior NMCA shoreline. Two new facilities along the north shore of Lake Superior are expected to open this summer.
Parks Canada’s Lake Superior NMCA team will be opening a small visitor centre in the newly-constructed Terrace Bay Beach Pavilion! This new waterfront facility is located on Lake Superior at the mouth of the Aguasabon River. The pavilion will welcome visitors looking to explore the northern coast of the lake. Upon opening, the centre will offer merchandise sales, community programs, interpretive programming, and celebratory events such as Canada Day and Lake Superior Day. A 300m boardwalk extends from the pavilion along a nature trail leading to Parks Canada red chairs, located at the eastern edge of the beach. Expect to see smiling Parks Canada staff on site at the Terrace Bay beach starting in Summer 2021.
Fifteen minutes west of Terrace Bay, the historic community of Schreiber is preparing for a grand opening of its own; the Schreiber Rail Discovery Centre! Part of a community revitalization project, this new interpretive centre sits next to Highway 17 in Schreiber. It resembles a modern train station, with an historic engine and railcars appearing to travel through the building! The Rail Discovery Centre will welcome visitors to Schreiber, connecting its past and present as a Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) town and Lake Superior coastal community.
One highlight will be an immersive video experience. Developed with the support of Parks Canada, the film displays the CPR’s connection to Lake Superior, noting the incredible challenge of constructing the railway along the lake in 1884-85. The film also touches on the distinctive cultural community of Schreiber. Many of today’s residents are descendants of Italian immigrants who came to Canada in the early 1900s to work for the railway.
Opening dates for the centres are still to be determined, but keep watching the Lake Superior NMCA Facebook page for updates.
These two new locations will be excellent for welcoming visitors to the communities, and will allow Parks Canada to introduce them to the eastern section of the Lake Superior NMCA. Here’s hoping you get to take that road trip soon. We will be waiting for you!
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