Mayor Ted Adlem with MLAs Randy Hawes and Marc Dalton are holding a celebration of Mission Memorial Hospital on Sunday, July 15 at Fraser River Heritage Park between noon and 3 p.m.
Hawes said there hasn’t been enough education about the hospital and its history and he wants to take this opportunity to let people know about both.
“I think we need to honour the people who built that hospital and fought to keep it running,” he said, adding the event will have speakers and storyboards that will do just that.
It will also be a chance to recognize the many volunteers who have helped keep costs down in the hospital, such as the members of the Mission Hospital Auxiliary, some of whom have been donating their time for over a half century.
“This hospital was built by a whole bunch of volunteers,” said Hawes, adding the auxiliary has continued that tradition to this day.
There will be hamburgers, hot dogs and drinks available for everyone in attendance. Proceeds from the sales will go to the Mission Archives, which will be providing historical information and photographs.
As well, children 10 and under can participate in a poster-drawing competition that celebrates something about the hospital or health care.
The event will be jointly funded by the district and the province.
At 3 p.m. the park will be turned over to a benefit concert with three Abbotsford bands raising money for Tristan Taylor, an Esquimalt man with a rare form of cancer.
The hospital is currently undergoing a massive $40-million upgrade with a 27,000-square-foot health centre providing primary care programs, including a diabetes and seniors’ clinic, while the campus of care will be a 128,000-square-foot facility providing 24-hour care for seniors.
Construction is expected to take about a year to complete and the facility is slated to open in September of 2013.