Barkerville Historic Town & Park has been welcoming fields trips from schools across British Columbia and beyond for decades, but with the onset of the onset of the COVID-19 State of Emergency, those field trips in 2020 and 2021 have been cancelled. We know that this has left a hole in the hearts of many students, parents, and educators. As our schools work hard to adapt to the COVID-19 State of Emergency, we’ve been working hard to adapt as well!

We are very pleased to announce Barkerville’s Spring 2021 Virtual Field Program. This program simulates the experience of a real field trip to Barkerville from the safety and comfort of students’ home computers. Classrooms and homeschool groups now have an opportunity to connect live and in real-time with our historic interpreters and join in on the engaging, entertaining, and educational presentations on a variety of gold rush subjects, including mining, justice, daily life, and Indigenous perspectives.

We’ve made over 300 individual field trip sessions available to schools and homeschool groups across Canada. We hope you and your students will join us for this high-quality and innovative virtual field trip season!


Testimonials from Teachers

“This was a fantastic opportunity for my students to learn more about the gold rush. We live on the coast and would never be able to experience this live at Barkerville. Some of my students actually said it was the best field trip ever!”

“Your virtual tour was as entertaining as being there live. I hope this treasure continues on generation after generation!”

“The virtual Barkerville historical experience was a high-quality, relevant event for my students. Learning about an authentic indigenous experience of the Gold Rush deepened connection and understanding for my students and me.”

“One of my students commented that their virtual field trip was the most fun they’ve had since Covid 19 began. The students have really enjoyed interacting with different characters. The field trips have been some of the few things that some students chose to participate in. I am very thankful for the high quality experience you have offered.”

“Having the actors tell the stories made it much more engaging for the students. History can be very hard to make interesting to young people. Making it more like a story really hooked their interest”

How it Works

Barkerville is offering virtual interactive fields trips every weekday from May 10th to June 11th, 2021. Using the Zoom online videoconferencing platform, teachers, homeschoolers, and their students can connect with Barkerville historic interpreters live and in real-time. Up to 16 sessions are available daily.

Step 1) If your students are all together in a classroom, ensure you have a projector setup that includes speakers, a microphone and a camera that we can interact with your classroom. If you students are joining from multiple locations, ensure they have a good internet connection and a device with a camera and microphone. If they have not joined a Zoom meeting before, we recommend you orient them to the software before their session.

Step 2) Visit our reservation system to book your sessions. Questions? contact Judy Mooring at judy.mooring@barkerville.ca or toll free at 250-994-3332 ex. 29.

Step 3) Once you have confirmed your booking through our reservation system, our staff will follow up with an email to provide a Zoom participation link and instructions.

Step 4) If you are joining from a classroom, simply click the Zoom link to start the program on your A/V setup. If students are joining remotely, share the Zoom participation link with them and remind them to log on when their session is about to start. For best results, we recommend groups of 5-30 students at a time.

Step 5) Enjoy the show!

Program Descriptions

A Virtual Tour of Barkerville – LIVE!

Gain an in-depth understanding of the gold rush history, Barkerville, and the colourful characters of years past by participating in our enlightening and entertaining town tour. Join Miss Wilson or Mrs. Hodgkinson as they escort your class virtually through our historic town.

Duration: 60 minutes.
Availability: Weekdays at 9:00 am and 10:30 am

Knight vs. Pierce: a virtual courthouse trial – LIVE!

In 1868, James Knight accuses Jesse Pierce of assault, but when the case is heard in the courtroom, Pierce has his own story to tell. Your class can now join us virtually in that courtroom to witness a re-enactment of this historic trial. Students can hear the testimony of the witnesses and maybe even be selected as a member of the jury. Will justice prevail? The classroom decides in this interactive courtroom drama hosted by historic figures of British Columbia’s colonial justice system. 

Duration: 60 minutes.
Availability: Weekday at 9:00 am and 10:30 am 

Barkerville and the Gold Rush: An Original People’s Perspective – LIVE!

Dahooja, Weyt-kp, Hadih! We invite your classroom to join Secwépemc (Shuswap) interpreters live from their home near Mountain House, on the Cariboo Waggon Road, aka the Gold Rush Trail. This session is broadcast from Cmetēm (Deep Creek) in the territory of Xatśūll First Nation (Soda Creek Indian Band). Share in stories and cultural practices. Learn perspectives of the gold rush and beyond from the original peoples of the land. Students can ask questions and participate in discussion of Canada’s path to Reconciliation.

Duration: 60 minutes.
Availability: Weekdays at 9:00 am, 10:30 am, 12:45 pm, and 2:15 pm

Man in miner's hatAmazing Tales from the Gold Rush Trail – LIVE!

A truly amazing historical overview of British Columbia’s Gold Rush. Your class can now join us virtually from Barkerville’s Government Assay Office to learn about the people who prospected their way to Williams Creek and how they followed the geological indicators to the fabulous riches of the Cariboo Gold Fields. Ask questions and interact with your hosts virtually in real-time. A must-see for anyone with gold fever.

Duration: 45 minutes.
Availability: Weekdays at 12:45 pm and 2:15 pm 

Gold from Novas to Nuggets – LIVE!

For millennia, gold has captured our imaginations and sent us searching to the edges of the world and digging to the very depths of the globe. But where did gold come from? What makes this metal so special? The answer is a tale as old as the cosmos itself that will take you from the forging of heavy elements within the hot furnaces of stars to the immense powers of glaciation during the last ice age.

Duration: 45 minutes.
Availability: Weekdays at 12:45 pm and 2:15 pm

Forged in Fire: Barkerville Edition – LIVE!

Barkerville Blacksmith Charles Hankin hosts an interactive and entertaining overview of the sights and sounds of Barkerville as thriving industrial town along the Cariboo Waggon Road, including the great Barkerville Fire of 1868, while demonstrating the artistry and importance of gold rush ironworkers from the Cameron & Ames Blacksmith Shop.   

Duration: 60 minutes.
Availability: Weekdays at 9:00 am and 10:30 am 

Meet the Press (at the Cariboo Sentinel Newspaper Office) – LIVE!

Barkerville newshound George Wallace hosts an interactive and entertaining virtual classroom from the Cariboo Sentinel Newspaper office, including demonstrations of our vintage printing press, an explanation of the historical origins of common, 21st-century word processing terms like “uppercase,” “lowercase,” “font,” and “stereotype,” and the significant role played by the media in the development and maintenance of gold rushes around the world.

Duration: 45 minutes.
Availability: Weekdays at 12:45 pm and 2:15 pm



What is the cost?

Registration is offered at no charge to teachers and homeschoolers for classroom use. A private virtual session is $150 for other groups of up to 30 people. 

How can I book a session?

Visit https://barkerville.shop/collections/virtual-field-trips to reserve your sessions. Once your bookings are confirmed, staff will follow up by email with a participation link and connection information.

Questions? Contact Judy Mooring: judy.mooring@barkerville.ca or toll free at 1-888-994-3332 ex. 29.

How do students or individual participants register?

Students and individual participants do not register. Teachers or group hosts will register and receive a participation link that they can share with their students or participants.

How many people can participate at once?

We recommend no less than 4 people and no more than 30 people participate in a session.

Can parents participate in a classroom session?

If you as the teacher allow it, parents are welcome to join their children on the virtual field trip.

Can I share the participation link with other teachers?

We recommend that each teacher book their own sessions unless your classroom is very small and you would like to combine with another teacher to make a larger group. The best interactivity happens with groups of 10-15 people.

Can I book a session for a family event, birthday party, or workplace activity?

Virtual sessions are available to the public for a suggested donation of $200. Contact Judy Mooring: judy.mooring@barkerville.ca or toll free at 1-888-994-3332 ex. 29.

I am a homeschooler. Can I register?

Yes, but because the classroom sessions are designed for groups, we recommend that homeschoolers organize with other homeschool families to book a session that will involve at least five participants.

Is there a sample of the programming I can see before booking?

There is a sample of some of our recorded programming at www.richinhistory.ca

What ages are appropriate for these virtual field trips?

We typically cater to Grades 4 to 7 but have designed the programs to adapt to 6 years old to 60 years old. Please let us know what grade(s) or types of people will be participating when you register.

Will participants be called upon by Barkerville interpreters? Can they ask questions?

Yes, and yes. Our fields trips are designed to provide two-way communication. Participants will be interacting with our historical interpreters just as the would if they were physically in Barkerville.

How have you managed privacy concerns?

When a you book a session, you are only person aside from our own staff with a participation link. This means that the only people who can join the Zoom room are the people you invite. We have configured our Zoom settings to prevent unwanted visiting, and have moderators hosting each session who can control what’s happening in case of emergency.

Can you record the session so others can watch it later?

No, for privacy reasons and to keep the sessions engaging and interactive, we will not record the sessions. New sessions are available every day.

I use Google Hangout, Microsoft Teams, etc. for my classroom. Can we use my preferred software to connect instead?

No, for simplicity and training purposes, our virtual field trips are currently only available via the Zoom platform. Zoom does not require that you create an account to use it.

Can I participate from a different time zone?

Yes. All programs times are all listed in Pacific Standard Time. There are several programs that run in the morning that would be suitable for teachers or hosts in other time zones.