Welcome to the Canadian Museum of Flight

Family Day 2023

On Monday, February 20, the Canadian Museum of Flight welcomed 1768 visitors. That made our Family Day 2023 a huge success, our best ever.


Despite the cold and rain and wind, people came.  And left with big smiles, particularly on the faces of the little ones carting off their craft creations and their prizes from the paper airplane contest.


Our thanks go out to all those from our community who joined us, and made our day special.


We have “a funky little museum with inner bigness.” Monday reminded us that our people, our volunteers and our entire community, are one huge element of “inner bigness.”


This year, so far, our visitor numbers are up significantly in all categories – regular visitors, tour groups, and, yes, events.


We dare to believe what we are experiencing is affirmation of our direction, our evolution towards a more and more valuable community amenity, towards an ‘aviation discovery center’ that inspires young people, tells stories people want to hear and to have told, and that educates.


We sure do appreciate the support and encouragement we are getting!


Thank you to all!










Can I?

 Is it okay to sit in the planes? YES! If the cockpits are open, please feel free to fly our planes.

Please be very careful, of course, climbing in and out. The planes are VERY hard and do not feel good when you bang your head!





Today I Learned!

Have you ever noticed the small holes at the end of a wooden propeller?

Wonder what they are for? Now you'll know!

They are to drain any water that happens to gather on the prop and work it's way under the protective metal cap.



Christmas at the Canadian Museum of Flight

The Christmas event at the Museum was an outstanding success with over 700 visitors on the November 27 event. As promised, Santa and Mrs. Santa arrived by aircraft right in front of the excited junior crowd.
Santa and Mrs. Santa arrived in a perfectly color-matched Cessna.
Hmmm... could that little plane actually fly all the way from the North Pole?
The cool, sunny weather did not deter visitors to the Museum displays, including the Beech 18.


 Avro Canada Orenda
Did you know that the Museum has a very significant Canadian artifact on display in the Hangar? It is the first generation of jet engines and ran for the first time in 1949 - the Orenda engine.
Read more in the Collection section...
The Avro Canada Orenda 10 engine on display at the Museum.

Remembrance Day
The Canadian Museum of Flight was open on Remembrance Day, November 11, 2022. The Museum’s SE5a replica WWI fighter provided an aerial tribute over several local cenotaphs.

The Museum’s Sopwith Camel replica WWI biplane was on static display at the Murrayville Cenotaph.  

Hangar reorganization
Recently there was need to 'unstuff' the hangar for a private function. Most of the aircraft on display were moved outdoors, but only one was fortunate to find shelter from the weather in a hangar.
On Monday a group of volunteers, led by the Museum President, were able to mop the floor, move tables back to storage and plot the new arrangements of displays.
Read more in the Press section...
Canadians in Flight stamps
Named one of Canada’s top 10 engineering achievements of the 20th century, the DHC-2 Beaver is considered the best bush plane ever built.
Canadians in Flight stamps honour aviation and aeronautic pioneers.
Read more in the Press section...
Volunteer activities
Volunteers are the 'heart and soul' of our Museum organization. 
Have you seen this classic picture taken at Langley Airport many years ago? Our dedicated volunteer crew has made steady progress on restoration of this aircraft back to flying condition.
Read more in the Cub Restoration section...
However, not all of the Museum's aircraft are wood and fabric. One classic aircraft on display in the courtyard is the Canadian designed and built Avro CF-100. Living outside is not kind to metal aircraft and the lower rudder of the CF-1oo has deteriorated due to its magnesium skin. The Museum's technical crew have removed the rudder and it is now being restored!
Read more about the CF-100 in the Collection section...
The CF-100 lower rudder after removal. Watch this space for progress!
Robert is making progress by fashioning a new skin of 0.032 inch aluminum.
Volunteer Saturday
The Museum has announced 'Volunteer Saturday' as a regular feature to accomodate those unable to come on weekdays. This will take place on the third Saturday of each month -  September 17, October 15 etc. We will be tackling all sorts of tasks around the museum ranging from dusting artifacts to restoring airplanes, and everything in between. No matter what your skill level or your abilities, there will be something for you to help us out with.
When the workday is done, we’ll kick back, socialize for a bit and share some well-deserved pizza (cost by donation). Once everyone is settled in and satiated, we’ll then put on an aviation themed movie for anyone who wants to stick around or join us !
Read more in the Press section...

2022 Airshows in the Fraser Valley
The Museum was once again a participant at the local airshows - Boundary Bay, Abbotsford and Chilliwack.
Read more in the Press section...
Remembering Ken Smith
Ken was a longtime supporter of the Museum and, over the years, especially during the first decade of the 2000s, he attended many of the Museum’s events (dinners, fundraisers, Member fly days, etc.).  His enthusiasm for aviation and the Museum was heartfelt and genuine.

The photo of Ken was taken in 2004 on the occasion of a Museum formation flight that took place over Fort Langley for the May Day parade.  Ken lived in Fort Langley at the time, so he was thrilled with the opportunity to fly for that event.  Pilot, Bill Findlay recalls that he was honoured to have Ken join him in the Fleet Finch for that flight.


Pilot, Bill Findlay with Ken in 2004.
From the Langley Advance Times:
On July 22nd, 2022 we had to say goodbye to our beloved Dad, Grandad, Great Grandad and friend, Ken Smith.

Ken was born in Maidstone, England. After serving with the R.A.F during WWII, he immigrated to Canada in 1947, where he met and married his soulmate, Pam. He lived an exemplary life, full of love and laughter, and everyone who knew him fell for his charm and great sense of humour.

Ken was a proud Canadian who also loved his British heritage. He was honoured every year at Remembrance Day ceremonies, and although he didn’t like to talk about the war years, we are all very proud of his belief in service. Ken was a valued volunteer for almost 20 organizations such as Fort Langley as Mr. Yale, the Air Museum as a former pilot, the Scouts of Canada, the town of Langley, and many more civic groups and organizations. He was also a popular presenter in elementary schools as Mr. Yale, a War Veteran and even Santa Claus.

Ken was always one for adventure and great experiences. From moving the whole family to Malaysia where they embraced the culture and foods to hot air ballooning at 70, skydiving at 80 AND 90, to taking advantage of every opportunity to learn or experience something new – like beer pong at a family wedding! Ken’s passion for travel and adventure is a legacy he passes on to his family.

Ken loved music – old, recorded, and live. He and Pam loved to dance, and he still enjoyed cutting a rug at Christmas and New Year’s parties. Ken’s wit and sense of humour always shone through. He loved watching people and enjoyed sharing stories with the young and old.

The family takes comfort in knowing he didn’t suffer long after almost 98 years of independence. He loved his family and friends and thoroughly enjoyed every day. He always said, “I am a lucky man.”

He is predeceased by his wife Pam and his daughter Joan (Bruno). Survived by sons Ken (Cathi), Ted (Nadine) and Tom (Anne), grandchildren, Jason, Jenn, Brandon, Alana, Mitchell, Caitie, Cody, Scott, and his great-grandchildren Jesse, Ellie, Vivi, and Tom.

Forever, we will drink a toast to our beloved Dad, Grandad, and Great-Grandad at every family gathering as we know he will be there in spirit. But the best part is, he will enjoy a drink with Pam and Joan as they watch over us.

A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Canadian Museum of Flight where Ken enjoyed volunteering.

Canada Day, July 1


On Canada Day, the Museum unveiled a new display called “Aviation and the Crown – A Flight through History.” As we are an aviation museum, it seemed natural for us to explore the ways in which aviation has supported Queen Elizabeth as she connects with Canadians. As aviation has evolved, royal tours have been able to evolve as well, making it less taxing for the Queen to cross our vast country, and making it possible for her to include smaller and more remote communities on he visits. Particularly northern communities.

Unveiling the display panels.


The 'junior' crowd admired aircraft fitting for their age...
The Canadian Museum of Flight takes particular pride in making it possible for all segments of our community to have an enjoyable and educational outing. In this instance, we are most pleased to recognize the support of Heritage Canada towards making that feasible. 

George Miller

Longtime Langley pilot, George Miller, hung up his helmet after 68 years at the controls of an aircraft. The 87-year-old Miller ended his career by flying across the country to the Chatham, New Brunswick airport in his Ryan Navion.

Read more in the Aviation History section;

May 23, Victoria Day

The Museum was open on Monday - Victoria Day. With the sunny skies and warm temperatures it was the perfect opportunity for visitors to come to the Museum and view the extensive range of exhibits.
They could see the flying creatures on display - the Moth and the Finch...
de Havilland Tiger Moth.
Fleet 16 Finch.

Annual General Meeting

 The Museum AGM was held in-person at the Museum on April 9. The quorum requirements were met with about 40 people present.
Treasurer, Al French presented the Financial Report. This was accepted by the Membership.
Bruce Friesen, Museum President reported on the progress made at the Museum in the last 12 months.
Director, Mike Sattler reported on future planning for the Museum.
Present Directors, Mike Sattler, Bruce Scott and Al French were re-elected to the Board. In addition, two new Directors were added to the Board – Joel Braun and Gwyn Symmons. Joel’s resume includes flying large airline aircraft and commercial construction, while Gwyn has extensive experience in urban planning and project management. They will both be valuable additions to the Board as the Museum moves forward to a new facility.

Tour Guides/Docents


Robert Gillcash has stuck up his hand to be our lead tour guide/docent for our general public tours.  Thank you, Robert!


Robert says:  “I have taken on the role of Lead Tour Guide and the first step I am doing is recruiting a lot of tour guides.  Giving tours is a lot of fun, I really enjoy meeting our guests, talking to them, and even helping them learn a lot about our airplanes and how they work.


If you are even slightly interested in doing this, please contact either myself or Bruce Friesen, at the museum.


In addition to recruiting volunteers, I will also be arranging instructions, so you'll know what to say and show along the route.  Finally, I'll be arranging schedules for the Tour Guides, so that we have a good amount of guides available on weekends and for private tours.  Please give some serious thought to helping our wonderful little museum grow to its fullest potential.”


Please do! 

Family Day 2022.
The Family Day weekend at the museum was a great success. Total visitors over the two days approached 550, which is by far our best accommodation of guests for the past two years, and a very welcome indication we can be of value to our community. There certainly were lots of smiles on leaving!
The Museum's SE5 sits outside in the chill sunshine awaiting admirers...
...while the Harvard wistfully scans the sky and the mountains.


Remembering Rose Zalesky

With profound sadness, the Directors and Members of the Canadian Museum of Flight Association note the passing of Rose Zalesky.
Rose holds a special place in our hearts as her character and commitment were fundamental to the success of our venture. In the 1970s, Rose, along with her late husband Ed Zalesky and three others, had the vision to protect and preserve our aviation heritage. And the organizational skills to collect and document most of what we now so proudly present to the public.
Rose invested many thousands of hours in the administration and management of our collections and of our organization. The evidence of her huge contribution of time, energy and skill resides in our corporate records. In our archives is an immense body of correspondence between Rose and donors, buyers, sellers and CMFT (as it was then) members. Each communication was personal, personable, positive, constructive and professional.
At this time of reflection, each of us is keenly aware that we are standing on the broad and strong foundation to which Rose contributed so much, as we strive to do our bit towards Rose’s passion: “Bringing British Columbia’s aviation past into the future.”


Don't forget to have a look at the Press section for the latest news from around the hangar;

Donations of old photographs

The Museum welcomes the donation of artifacts of significance to the history of aviation in BC. On the list are photographs that document this history.
Visitors come by the office and drop off a box of books, photos, logbooks, tools etc. Some of the photos (prints and color slides) are of old aircraft that most people cannot identify. So the detective work starts. What is the aircraft, who owned it, what is the location?
Unfortunately, sometimes the person leaves before contact information is gathered and we have no way of tracing the story behind the photos. 
For details see our Press section;

The British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP)

During World War 2, Canada was a major contributor in training aircrew for the battles around the world. The plan was known as the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP). This year, 2020, is the 80th anniversary of the Plan being put into action.
To remember and honour this massive war effort, the Canadian Museum of Flight has a special display in the hangar. Come and visit the Museum.
One of the aircraft used to train fighter pilots was the Hawker Hurricane, shown in this RCAF photo;
See more in our Aviation History section;
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