26 June 2006

Experience? Yeah, I guess so.

So, Victoria's new "premiere attraction," The BC Experience opened to the public today and with all of today's entrance fees by donation (going to The Land Conservancy), we bellied up to the bar for a peek.

I put it in my Near Miss category in my Unofficial Guide to Victoria, because if you are from BC, or you've travelled in BC, or hell, if you spent an hour online learning about BC before coming here, you won't learn much inside the Experience. On the other hand, if you are from out of town but can't afford to see more of BC beyond Victoria, or you are a cartography geek, then this is your kind of attraction.


The centrepiece of the attraction is a BIG map. Very big. Bigger than a tennis court. Around the map are 14 "interpretive centres" (touch screen computers). There are also bigger interactive centres (bigger computers, with zoomable satelite maps -- not unlike Google Earth), and two small "theatres" (big screen plasma TVs) plus one big theatre that shows a 15 minute advertisement short film that showcases the scenery of British Columbia. There are also a number of little displays around the mezzanine and two learning centres on the main floor.

The really interesting thing is that throughout the attraction there is information on the history of the Crystal Gardens. The history only talks about the indoor salt water pool -- at no time do they mention the 20 years (give or take) that the Gardens were a tropical-botanical attraction.

Bottom line, I won't be going back any time soon, but there are some people, I'm sure, who will get their $15 worth.

tags: Victoriabc, tourist attraction, BC Experience


pastilla said...

Question: Are you old enough to remember swimming there? (Not in salt water, but in chlorinated?)

Cheryl said...

Not even close. The public pool closed 2 years before I was born. ;)

Pastilla said...

I keep forgetting what a sweet, young thing you are ;)

I attended a Brownie (=Zombie) party there . . . quite a creepy memory, actually. The place was dark, shadowy, and falling to bits. So much chlorine in the water that everyone's eyes turned scarlet within minutes.

Tim said...

What a waste. A hundred more useful purposes that building could be put to, and this is the one that wins out.

It *is* a BC Experience, though -- inasmuch as anything that happens within the borders of BC is a BC Experience. I suppose it helps them avoid challenges of over-charging: "Hey, all we said it was going to be was a BC Experience. It's not named 'Interesting Experience' or 'Worth Fifteen Bucks Experience,' so we're not lying."