Ste. Anne heritage walk showcasing town’s history

Ste. Anne-de-Bellevue town councillor Ryan Young will lead a historic walking tour of the waterfront town on May 7. (Photo: Kristina Edson)

A free heritage walking tour taking place in Ste. Anne-de-Bellevue will be a nod to pedestrian-friendly neighbourhoods and the hope that remaining accessible and user-friendly will be a priority in future urban planning. Ste. Anne municipal councillor Ryan Young will lead a May 7 walking tour that will encompass much of the waterfront town’s storied past. “I grew up here and I know a lot of the history of the town,” Young said of the event he created. Young, who also teaches at nearby John Abbott College, said the walk is a nod to Jane Jacobs, an activist and urbanist who wrote the book The Death and Life of Great American Cities. Jacobs believed in community-based urban planning to ensure that towns remain walkable and accessible. Her ideas led to the creation of Jane’s Walks, free, locally organized walking tours that celebrate the notion of neighbourhoods. Jane’s Walks are traditionally held around the globe each year on May 6, 7 and 8. “Her idea was to bring the town back to being a pedestrian safe zone,” Young said, adding such concepts were a primary focus when Ste. Anne-de-Bellevue revamped its own downtown core, making it much more pedestrian friendly. Part of the refurbishment included installing information placards in various places that showcase certain heritage buildings or points. During the walking tour that can accommodate up to 40 participants, Young says he’ll include interesting historical tidbits about the oldest sections of the Ste. Anne-de-Bellevue town hall, the Simon Fraser House that dates back to the1800s, the town’s Catholic church, the Ste. Anne locks, and more. And there’ll be the telling of a story about a painting purported to have magical powers that many sailors believed strongly in. Young is also open to offering such walks in the future during the weekly Ste. Anne Farmer’s Market. “If there’s enough interest I’d be happy to lead walks each weekend,” he noted. And while the May 7 walk will be conducted in English, Young said he would welcome the creation of a French-language walk if someone wants to spearhead the project. The May 7 historic tour will begin at 11 a.m. at 74 rue Ste-Anne in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue. To register email Ryan Young at or go to

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