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A Fruitful Century
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The B.C.F.G.A. Exhibitions

A fruitful century

Following on the success of the first exhibition at Vancouver, the B.C.F.G.A. held annual summer exhibitions of flowers, fruit and vegetables for several years. The 1890 exhibition was held at New Westminster, with nearly double the entries of the previous year. In 1891 the show was held in Victoria, with the intention of increasing interest in the Association on Vancouver Island. The prize list, in four categories, now stood at $718.28 Vancouver was to be the site of the 1892 exhibition, but this had to be first postponed and then cancelled on account of an outbreak of smallpox which prevented public gatherings.29 The following year the Association decided to abandon the idea of holding its own exhibition, and instead decided to use the money to send a display of British Columbia fruit to the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. By this time there were several local agricultural fairs, such as the Royal Agricultural Society show at New Westminster. The B.C.F.G.A. adopted the policy of supplying judges for fruit competitions at these shows rather than holding one of its own.

Central Farmers’ Institute Meeting, Victoria, 1903. Note Thomas G. Earl (seated far right 2nd row), Thomas A. Brydon (standing far right 3rd row), and K.M. Palmer (second from left in 3rd row). All three served as B.C.F.G.A. presidents; Thomas Cunningham (second from left in front row) was also very involved in the early B.C.F.G.A.Courtesy PABC

The B.C.F.G.A. Exhibition was revived in 1900, and held at the Alhambra Flotel in Vancouver on August 8th and 9th, but while it enjoyed the honour of being opened by the Lieutenant- Governor, Sir Henry Joly de Lotbiniere, attendance was poor. “When the exhibition opened there were not a dozen people there, and it was a failure from first to last.” 1 No further exhibitions were held by the B.C.F.G.A.