5. Being the Local Expert on the Time Zone

Creston MuseumBehind The Scenes, News & Articles, Twenty-Five Years at the Creston Museum Leave a Comment

Speaking of crazy stories, the one that crops up most often is the local time zone. Back in about 2009, a newly elected Town Councilor announced that she was going to ”fix” Creston’s time zone.

Within what felt like about 15 seconds, my phone started ringing off the hook.

Some callers wanted to know how many times there have been referendums or polls or debates on the subject of Creston’s wacky time zone. Most wanted to know why we got it in the first place, or for me to confirm their opinion on the subject. One or two wanted to know if the boy in the famous photo of the last spike on the CPR (the one at the top of the page, which I borrowed from the internet) was really Creston’s own Edward Mallandaine (yes, it is, and if you want to know how that’s connected to Creston’s time zone, it’s because the CPR invented Standard Time, and Standard Time, in a kind of round-about way, gave us our time zone. It’s a slightly tenuous connection to say the least).

Well, one of the joys of working in a small museum is I get to dive down these rabbit holes, and still call it work. It happens all the time…family histories, locations of movie theatres, unusual ski jumps, snowiest snow days and hottest hot days – all of those and more have got me sidetracked at one time or another. The result of this one was a fairly lengthy article detailing the history and causes of Creston’s time zone.

It was the feature article in I Love Creston magazine that May.

The magazine also had an online edition. From that time on, any time someone searched the internet for information on Creston’s time zone, that article showed up.

Creston’s wacky time zone has had its impact over the years.

Any time someone, somewhere in North America, does something with the time zone in their area, that article shows up in their Google search – and then they’d call me for more information. Someone talks about eliminating Daylight Saving Time in BC? Let’s talk to Creston! Washington State is thinking about eliminating it? I bet Creston will have some insight! The US passes the “Sunshine Protection Act” to put the whole country permanently on Daylight Saving Time? Maybe Creston can tell us how they cope with the darkness in the mornings (my answer to that last one: “Well, I usually just roll over and go back to sleep…”).

No, I’m not making this up. I told you – I’ve only done that once!

That article, that I wrote as a result of going down a rabbit hole fourteen years ago, has been cited in media outlets ranging from Global TV Vancouver to CBC Daybreak to the Globe and Mail (and whatever newspaper it was that called me about the Sunshine Protection Act…I’m not sure I ever did catch the name of that one!).

If you’d like to read the article, it’s on our website: Part 1 and Part 2.