RVwest Insider

Britannia Mine Museum’s “BOOM!” launches June 1 & 2

Britannia Mine Museum’s BOOM! live-action special effects experience inside the historic Mill building.
Britannia Mine Museum’s BOOM! live-action special effects experience inside the historic Mill building. — Photo courtesy Britannia Mine Museum

Have you ever driven by the Britannia Mine Museum along the Sea to Sky Highway and wondered what exactly is that giant building attached to the side of the mountain? Thousands of people have asked and that question will be answered through the imaginative storytelling of the Museum’s latest attraction and new theatrical mill show: BOOM!

Launching to the public on the weekend of June 1 & 2, the almost 100-year-old giant Mill building will come to life with BOOM!, a live-action, sensory-thrilling, special effects show that sheds light into the mystique behind the 20-storey building and National Historic Site.

“BOOM! is our newest and biggest production since we relaunched the Museum almost 10 years ago back in 2010,” says Kirstin Clausen, Executive Director of the Britannia Mine Museum. “BOOM! is a creative way of storytelling to share the Britannia story and how instrumental the Mill building was to the community of Britannia and its significance in British Columbia’s history.”

BOOM! will transport visitors back in time to the 1920s when the Mine was booming as the largest copper producer in the British Commonwealth. The show shares the magical story of the 20-storey architectural marvel as one of North America’s last gravity-fed concentrator mills.

Interesting facts about BOOM!:

  • The Museum preserved the original “skip”, a 3-tonne rail car that transported equipment up and down the 20-storey Mill.
  • A new mock-skip was built out of raw steel to mimic the weight and movement of the original rail car, which was then set decorated by Bold Exhibits and transformed to an authentic, vintage-looking Museum piece.
  • The Museum’s own archive collection of images, blueprints and documents was used to research the show for accuracy about equipment and processes.  
  • More than 30 point-sourced speakers are used to create an atmospheric soundscape.
  • Sound levels are mixed to the same decibel levels as an IMAX theatre, taking advantage of the Mill’s natural acoustics that have been compared to Carnegie Hall.
  • More than 130 artists, designers, trades, technicians, and engineers were involved in creating this unique one-of-a-kind immersive storytelling experience.

“I am very proud of the fact that the Britannia Mine Museum is a place where people of all ages can come for fun and learning. It is also the perfect place for discovery; about how each of us is connected to mining, about how we need minerals from our earth for modern solutions; and about the role we all play in our earth’s sustainability,” explains Clausen.

BOOM! is the culmination of a multi-year journey from inspiration to completion between the Museum’s staff and Board of Directors, and the incredible collaboration with show designer and producer Vista Collaborative Arts as well as the contribution of Dynamic Attractions from Port Coquitlam, renowned for international projects including rides at theme parks such as Universal Studios and Disney.

About Britannia Mine Museum:

The Britannia Mine Museum is a mining legacy site and a vibrant, internationally recognized education and tourist destination located between Vancouver and Whistler on the Sea-to-Sky highway. It is a National Historic Site and a non-profit organization encouraging mining awareness through entertaining, experiential education programs and exhibits, important historic collection preservation and insightful public engagement that allows guests to leave with a better understanding of mining in BC; past, present and future. The Britannia Mine Museum is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with guided tours throughout the day. www.britanniaminemuseum.ca

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