Next Wednesday will mark a sure sign of springtime in Thorold—the annual opening of the Lock 7 Viewing Complex and Museum.
Summer students have been hired to accommodate tourists and answer questions, and visitors will see a new deck has been installed at the building this season, said Thorold Tourism Agent Sue Morin.
As a bonus to boat-lovers, the excess branches that were blocking guests’ sightlines to ships have been removed.
“We are proud to say that the view of the canal is amazing.”
Starting May 15, the centre will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day until Thanksgiving weekend.
At a recent Thorold and Beaverdams Historical Society meeting, museum manager Randy Barnes invited Thoroldites to the May 15 opening, and spoke of the “real optimism and great deal of discussion regarding heritage in Thorold.”
Barnes said that Mayor Terry Ugulini has requested 100 historical museum items to display at City Hall.
In addition, a new live stream has been installed at the viewing complex, which will be linked to the city’s website, enabling online visitors to watch boats sailing through the Welland Canal at Lock 7. It will also be linked to www.boatnerd.com
A celebration of the city’s prestigious Prince of Wales prize for heritage is being planned for the near future. Flags have been ordered and will proudly fly on Front Street, commemorating the award bestowed on Thorold by none other than Prince Charles himself.
“There’s a lot of interesting things in the works and we are working hard to promote Thorold’s history,” Barnes stated. “The museum is great as far as people being able to come in and look at things, but the vast majority of the work will be digitized. We want people to be able to view it and study it online. We have a couple of volunteers,” to digitize the historic files, he said, and “will be renovating part of the basement to set up scanning and other equipment.”
“If we do end up amalgamating, it’s going to be up to us to keep the identity of the community alive, and our job will be even more important than ever.”
The Lock 7 Viewing Complex and Museum is located at 50 Chapel Street North.