Four members of the Y.P. A. (Young People’s Association) are in costumes on a dressed stage at the Eagles Hall on First Avenue North in Port Alberni, in this photo dated 1931. The YPA put on various live performances including a memorable Variety Night concert in December 1934, just as the Albernis were heading out of the Depression and into prosperity once again. This is one of nearly 24,000 photos in the Alberni Valley Museum’s digital collection. See more at https://portalberni.pastperfectonline.com. Many of the history books cited in the Look Back series are available at the museum. (PN12995 COURTESY ALBERNI VALLEY MUSEUM)

A LOOK BACK: live on stage

Take a peek into Alberni Valley history with Alberni Valley Museum

Four members of the Young People’s Association are dressed in costume and either rehearsing or performing a live theatre piece in this historic photo dated 1931.

The name of the production is lost now, but the set included a couch and fireplace, and characters included a doctor, nurse, priest and various others. This is one of a series of other photos that look like they are from the same night.

The Young People’s Association was a group of youth from the combined Anglican and United Church.

Vancouver Island historian Jan Peterson wrote about one notable performance put on by the YPA: a variety night in December 1934, in the Eagles Hall on First Avenue North. The end of 1934 was the beginning of post-Depression prosperity for Alberni and Port Alberni, Peterson wrote in Twin Cities: Alberni–Port Alberni.

The Eagles Hall burned down in 1952 when a fire that started in the nearby Port Alberni Theatre (known as the Port Theatre) engulfed other buildings on First Avenue between Argyle and Athol Street (see photo PN12162 in the Alberni Valley Museum’s collection for a fire photo).

This photo is one of nearly 24,000 in the Alberni Valley Museum’s collection. See more at https://portalberni.pastperfectonline.com/ Many of the history books cited in the Look Back series are available for purchase at the AV Museum. Call 250-720-2863 for more information.

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