Monday was a busy Family Day in the Langleys.
Most venues offering family-friendly activities reported lineups, with hundreds of people queuing up for everything from the bouncy castles, games and craft tables at the Timms Centre in Langley City to waiting for a chance to sit in the pilot’s seat of one of the jet fighters on display at the Canadian Museum of Flight at the Langley airport.
“Less than two hours in and we’ve got well over 300 people here already,” said museum of flight manager manager Dave Arnold shortly after the doors opened.
“Lots of families. The kids are having a ball.”
The Museum of Flight’s third annual Family Day open house featured an airplane-themed Valentine cards craft table, tours of the museum and a cookie’s n’ cream hot chocolate station.
The day provided near-perfect weather, dry, bright and relatively warm, not that it really mattered as far as the Timms centre was concerned.
All the activity was in the indoor gymnasium, which offered bouncy castles, crafts and games for all ages.
“It (Timms) gives us a nice venue that’s indoors, so weather never plays a factor for us any more,” said Timms event organizer Tera Edell.
Over at the Langley Events Centre, the Fraser Valley Family Day was relocated from the fieldhouse to the arena this year.
C&D Logistics, along with the LEC and Vancouver Giants, presented a full day of events starting with a free family skate, followed by the Vancouver Giants taking part in a skills competition and autograph sessions.
For kids, there was everything from bouncy castles and balloon making to face painting.
Township firefighters were there with their smoke room.
The day was free, but donations were welcomed with proceeds going to Basic for Babies and the Washington Kids Foundation to help underprivileged kids play sports.
This was the last time B.C. residents would have a holiday break in early February that leaves the province out-of-sync with the rest of the country.
Starting next year, Family Day in the province will move to the third week of the month so that it’s in line with other provinces.
Family Day was set up in 2013 in B.C., following a public feedback session that recommended the holiday be on either the second or third Monday of February.
The Liberal government, under then-premier Christy Clark, chose the second Monday.
The decision generated complaints that businesses in B.C. would be closed when their counterparts in other provinces were operating, and that people who worked for companies based in Eastern Canada would still had to work on the day because it wasn’t a holiday where the headquarters was located.
In 2019, Family Day will fall on Feb. 18, the same as the rest of Canada.