For Lauren Boni, a day doesn't go by without her seeing someone stop to read one or more of the engraved plaques outside her office window at White Rock Museum & Archives.
"Some people will spend the time to look at them all, or most of them," said Boni, the museum's manager of visitor services and resource development.
The bronze plaques are cut in the shape of an old train locomotive - fitting, given the previous use of the museum building as a train station on the White Rock waterfront - and embedded in foot-long concrete slabs placed in rows on the promenade.
Close to 450 of the plaques have been sold to the general public, at $600 each, including 34 new ones cemented last week as part of a second row of bronze trains.
The museum's popular Train Plaque Campaign serves as a key fundraiser for programs at the non-profit facility.
"It's been overwhelming, the number of people who want to buy a plaque," Boni said. "That is encouraging, because it's probably become our major fundraiser."
The personalized plaques offer people a chance to memorialize a loved one, commemorate a wedding, celebrate an anniversary or congratulate a new graduate.
"The most common one is a memorial plaque, a permanent way to remember someone," Boni said. "And there's a woman who bought six of them to mark birthdays in her family. Some people come by here every few weeks to polish their plaque - those are the shiny ones."
The next installation of plaques will be done next spring, Boni added. Order forms are available at the museum, 14970 Marine Dr., and can also be downloaded from the facility's website, www.whiterockmuseum. bc.ca. Call 604-541-2222 for details.
"Heritage stones," or 18-inch metal signs mounted on a small boulder, are also sold through the museum. The signs display historical info relevant to sites in the area.
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A 20th annual holiday market is in full swing at White Rock Museum & Archives, running from Nov. 23 to Dec. 20. The works of two dozen artists and crafters are part of the market, held in the museum's main exhibit space. Event times are Monday to Friday from 10: 30 a.m. to 4: 30 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4: 30 p.m.
Looking ahead, a travelling exhibit called Chinese Legacies: Building the Canadian Pacific Railway will be shown at the museum starting in January. The exhibit, created by the Revelstoke Railway Museum and the Revelstoke Museum & Archives, explores the story of the thousands of Chinese labourers who contributed to the building of the CPR between Port Moody and Craigellachie, B.C.
Next May, an exhibit will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the train station, built in 1913. Amanda Sittrop, the museum's collections and exhibitions co-ordinator, is on a hunt for any photos, documents or personal memories of the old train station. Contact Sittrop via 604-541-2230 or firstname.lastname@example.org.