Creeping Around Altona

Curiosity can be pretty creepy, eh? That’s how I felt when we explored Altona. Although it didn’t start out that way.

First, we checked out the big sunflower easel and the new walking path and cairn. I have not featured a picture of the front of the sunflowers because I’ve heard that the area produces less sunflowers now and maybe some folks are having second thoughts about the whole “Van Gogh” thing.

I was pleased to see the cairn is dedicated to Conscientious Objectors. According to this article on Pembina Valley Online, this cairn was dedicated in 2012. I also learned that actually many of the CO’s hadn’t wanted to be recognized. Though eventually the committee was able to drum up support for the project. I find it interesting that they wouldn’t want to be recognized. This is something I’d like to examine a little more.

Next, we went to check out the Bergthaler Waisenamt, which was built in 1916 and is one of the oldest buildings still standing in Altona. The Waisenamt was established back in Prussia; it was how Mennonites took care of widows and orphans. But in the 1930s, the organization collapsed. Today this building houses apartments… but it’s definitely one of the coolest in Altona.

Check it out — you can still see where it faintly says “The Bergthaler” just above the window!

Okay, this is where it starts to get creepy. You can tell the sun is going down, it’s getting darker, but we still wanted to sites of historical value. (We were only in the area for a short time!) So we kept exploring. Next up, the Klippenstein House! According to the government of Manitoba, it’s “Municipal Heritage Site No. 87”, built by original Altona pioneers. It’s a beautiful home… but I sure felt like a creeper when I took this picture for the blog:

Andrew told me that we could NOT forget about one of the most prominent Altona historical sites: the MCC thrift shop! I stood on the street and took a picture. Then we stood looking at it for awhile in the deepening darkness. No one else was around for some reason. Just us. On the street. Looking at the MCC. You know, just taking it all in.

This was when our friend found us. This was hilarious. “You two look so creepy.” This was undeniable. At this point, we strolled around town, trying  to see some more sites. But, well, the pictures didn’t turn out very well. (Though, to be honest, they’re clearer than I’d thought they’d be.)

Look! It’s the ox with a cart by Highway 30!

But I don’t know what that plaque says.

After this we gave up. We had exceeded our creepy behaviour quota for the day.