LOOK BACK: Lunch at Woodward’s in Port Alberni

Department store opened in Port Alberni in 1948

Concern over the closure of the Woodward’s lunch counter led the museum to commission Margo Thom to photograph the area in February 1993. It is believed that the lunch counter was little changed since the store was built in the late 1940s. A standing sign to the right foreground states, “Woodward’s Restaurants will close permanently on Saturday, Feb. 27, 1993. Thank you for your loyal patronage.” This and 24,000 other historical photos can be seen on the Alberni Valley Museum’s online photo archive at portalberni.pastperfectonline.com. (PHOTO PN13262 COURTESY ALBERNI VALLEY MUSEUM)

Concern over the closure of the Woodward’s lunch counter led the museum to commission Margo Thom to photograph the area in February 1993. It is believed that the lunch counter was little changed since the store was built in the late 1940s. A standing sign to the right foreground states, “Woodward’s Restaurants will close permanently on Saturday, Feb. 27, 1993. Thank you for your loyal patronage.” This and 24,000 other historical photos can be seen on the Alberni Valley Museum’s online photo archive at portalberni.pastperfectonline.com. (PHOTO PN13262 COURTESY ALBERNI VALLEY MUSEUM)

For many decades, Woodward’s Department Store was a premier shopping destination in Port Alberni.

The store opened in Port Alberni in 1948 and was a one-stop shop for Alberni Valley residents, who could buy groceries, order furniture, develop camera film and grab a quick bite to eat at the lunch counter.

READ MORE: Woodward’s was an Alberni Valley landmark

The Hudson’s Bay Company purchased the Woodward’s store in 1993 and converted it to a Zellers.

Concern over the closure of the Woodward’s lunch counter led the local museum to commission Margo Thom to photograph the area in February 1993. These photos can now be found on the Alberni Valley Museum’s online photo archive at portalberni.pastperfectonline.com.

The Zellers store on Third Avenue closed in 2013. The empty building was purchased by Coulson Group of Companies.

READ MORE: Alberni Zellers to close in 2013

Today, the Coulson Group has converted the old store display windows into the “Windows of Hope” to create awareness about local non-profit organizations in the community.

Port Alberni