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September 30, 2017

Markham celebrates Canada 150!

This year's Doors Open Markham event marks this significant milestone in our nation's history. Our sites include historical places that reflect our community's past as well as sites that represent the diverse cultures that contribute to Markham today.

The City of Markham is a place where the old and the new co-exist as a unique expression of our community.

With our blossoming downtown Markham Centre taking shape only a short distance from historical Unionville, we are a city of contrasts and diversity that reflects our motto, Leading while remembering.

Want to be part of Doors Open Markham 2017?

Consider volunteering for event day. Please send your contact information to gduncan@markham.ca.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Self-guided tours available

105 Gibson Centre

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
105 Gibson Drive
Markham, Ontario
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The 105 Gibson Centre is a Christian faith-based community centre devoted to bringing positive changes to the surrounding neighbourhood. It is an active place, offering recreational facilities and programs, youth services, abundant life programs and a food bank. At the heart of the facility is the Cultural Café, a friendly gathering place that offers food, drink and fellowship.

Full wheelchair access
Guided tours available
Site has blue and gold provincial plaque

Bethesda Lutheran Cemetery

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
9423 Kennedy Road
Markham, Ontario
Year built: Established 1803
Landscape type: Garden
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; guided tours at 1 and 3 p.m.

The Bethesda Lutheran Cemetery is the original site of the church that served the German settlers who came to Markham with William Berczy in 1794. The cemetery commemorates the founding families of Markham and Unionville, and is marked with two provincial plaques. Parking on nearby side streets is recommended.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available

Bethesda Lutheran Church

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
20 Union Street
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 1910
Style: Gothic revival
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This centre of worship, originally located north of the village of Unionville, was built for descendants of Markham's founding families. In 1862, a brick church was built on the hill overlooking Unionville, next to a historical cemetery. In 1910, the building was dismantled and rebuilt on its current site to bring it closer to the community it serves.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available

Heintzman House

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
135 Bay Thorn Drive
Markham, Ontario
Telephone: 905-889-7980
Year built: 1816
Style: Regency
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The earliest part of this country mansion is an adobe brick cottage dating from the early 19th century. Colonel George Crookshank enlarged the house in 1817, and it became known as Sunnyside Manor. Charles T. Heintzman, grandson of the founder of Toronto’s Heintzman Piano Company, purchased the property in the 1930s and transformed the house into its present, elegant form.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available

Ladies' Golf Club of Toronto

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
7859 Yonge Street
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 1922; established in 1924
Landscape type: Landscape
Style: Period revival
Building type: Historic landmark
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Ladies' Golf Club of Toronto was begun by women for women. The clubhouse was originally a country estate called Brooklands, built for Strafford Watson (son of a prominent Toronto lawyer) as a wedding present. The course was designed by the distinguished golf course architect, Stanley Thompson. Champion golfer Ada Mackenzie was the driving force behind the club's establishment.

Parking
Guided tours available

Markham Heritage Estates Walking Tour

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
Meet opposite 11 Heritage Corners Lane
Markham, Ontario
Saturday: Guided tours at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. only

Markham Heritage Estates, a subdivision of relocated and restored heritage homes, has captured the imagination of would-be house restorers since its establishment in the 1980s. It's a must-see destination for anyone who dreams of rescuing a historical treasure and bringing it back to its former glory.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Self-guided tours available
Site has blue and gold provincial plaque

Markham Museum

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
9350 Markham Road
Markham, Ontario
Year built: Established 1971
Building type: Museum
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Markham Museum was established in 1971 to preserve artifacts, documents and buildings from the city's past. This year for Doors Open, the museum features an interactive science exhibit, True or False, the newly-restored Kinnee barn with early farm implements, and the Honey House with an exhibit on the life cycle of bees.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Self-guided tours available

Markham Village Fire Station

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
207 Main Street North
Markham, Ontario
Telephone: 905-477-0117
Year built: 1985
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The design of this building was inspired by the late 19th century firehalls, and features a 60-foot tall replica of a hose drying tower, common to most firehalls back in the day. Take a guided tour of the facility and see an antique fire engine.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Self-guided tours available

Markham Village Library

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
6031 Highway 7 East
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 1982
Architect: Phillip Carter Architects
Style: International
Building type: Library
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The library is a noteworthy example of post-modern architecture, built on the site of the old Markham Fairgrounds. The award-winning landmark building was considered avant-garde for its design – one of the first of its kind in the Greater Toronto Area. In 2006, a major addition was made, designed by Shoalts and Zaback Architects Ltd., to complement the building’s original style.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms

Markham Village Train Station

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
214 Main Street North
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 1870
Building type: Transportation
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Built in 1870 during Canada’s golden age of railway development, the station was restored by the City of Markham in co-operation with the Markham Village Conservancy in 2000. Today, it serves as a community meeting space and waiting room for the GO train. The exterior has been restored to its 1910 appearance.

Parking
Guided tours available

McKay Art Centre

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
197 Main Street
Unionville, Ontario
Year built: c. 1850
Building type: Museum
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This circa 1850 house is a distinctive example of Ontario vernacular architecture and features dramatic Gothic-revival and classical-revival detailing. The exterior is mostly board and batten and the rest is coarse stone. Group of Seven artist Frederick Varley lived here in his later years and had a studio in the basement. See his work in the nearby Varley Art Gallery.

Parking
Kid-friendly
Guided tours available

Railview Model Railway Club

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
550 Alden Road, Unit 201
Markham, Ontario
Telephone: 416-668-1459
Building type: Attraction
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Railview Model Railroad Club hosts one of the largest HO-scale layouts in Ontario at over 279 metres (3,000 square feet) in size. The club models the Hamilton/Bayview Junction from three time periods: 1940s-50s (steam to diesel), 1960s-70s (second generation diesel) and 1980 to present day (modern-era rail transport). Club members will showcase their work and welcome new members.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available

St. Maurice and St. Verena Coptic Orthodox Church

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
3300 Highway 7 East
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 2016
Style: Period revival
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This new place of worship boasts a unique architectural design, combining ancient tradition with contemporary appeal. The Coptic Church was established in Egypt in the first century A.D. and came to Canada with Coptic immigration in the mid- 20th century. The complex features a community centre complete with a gymnasium, banquet hall, daycare centre, recording studio and classrooms.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Self-guided tours available

St. Philips on-the-Hill Anglican Church

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
9400 Kennedy Road
Markham, Ontario
Year built: Established 1794
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

St. Philips on-the-Hill's history goes back to early Unionville days when Lutherans and Anglicans worshipped together under Reverend Vincent Mayerhoffer. The congregation split during the tumultuous days of the 1837 Rebellion in Upper Canada. In 1910, the congregation moved into the village of Unionville. In 1986, they returned to a new building on the original site.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Guided tours available
Site is protected by the Ontario Heritage Trust

Stiver Mill Community Centre

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
9 Station Lane
Unionville, Ontario
Year built: 1916
Style: Vernacular
Building type: Commercial, Food and drink
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Unionville's restored Stiver Mill, a local landmark, now serves as a community centre and farmers’ market. Originally built as a grain elevator, the western portion of the structure is one of the last of its kind in the region. A feed mill was added to the east end in the 1930s. On-site exhibits celebrate Markham's agricultural heritage.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
Self-guided tours available

Thornhill Village Library

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
10 Colborne Street
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 1851
Landscape type: Garden
Style: Neoclassical
Building type: Library
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The building that now houses the Thornhill Village Library was originally the home of Ellen Frizzell Ramsden, who is said to return to visit occasionally. This excellent example of classical-revival architecture and adaptive reuse was restored under the direction of B. Napier Simpson, whose architectural office was next door. For Doors Open, enjoy drop-in tours, including ghost stories.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Self-guided tours available

Unionville Presbyterian Church

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
600 Village Parkway
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 1991
Style: Period revival
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Unionville's Presbyterian congregation goes back to the 1870s. As the church grew, the congregation moved into a former Congregational church on Main Street. In 1892, they moved again to a brick church across the street, where they worshipped until the 1925 formation of the United Church. In 1980, they began anew and moved into their current location in 1991.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms

Unionville Train Station

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
7 Station Lane
Unionville, Ontario
Year built: 1870
Building type: Transportation
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Unionville’s train station, built in 1870 for the Toronto and Nipissing Railway, is one of Canada’s oldest. Restored by the Town of Markham, the station is a popular community meeting facility. Nearby is the Stiver Brothers’ Mill, another local landmark, recently restored by the City of Markham.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms

Varley Art Gallery

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
216 Main Street
Unionville, Ontario
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Situated in Unionville’s historical village core, the Varley Art Gallery is an excellent example of postmodern architecture. The gallery, named after Group of Seven artist Frederick Horsman Varley, is home to a fine collection of the artist’s oils, watercolours and drawings. During Doors Open, enjoy gallery tours and vault tours.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Guided tours available
Ontario 150

William Grant House and Rhenish Lutheran Church

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
2667 But Oak Avenue
Markham, Ontario
Year built: 1884; 2009
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This year, the church celebrates the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, Canada 150 and the 8th anniversary of their building. Visitors can tour the church and the adjoining William Grant House, an 1884 farmhouse. The carefully restored Grant House serves a variety of functions in association with the church, and features a remarkable stucco finish designed to resemble ashlar stonework.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available

Wong Dai Sin Temple

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
378 Steeles Avenue East
Thornhill, Ontario
Year built: 2015
Architect: Shim-Sutcliffe Architects
Style: International
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This remarkable expression of contemporary architecture is home to the Fung Loy Kok Institute of Taoism, dedicated to inner spiritual development through the practice of the ancient art of tai chi. It is a modern sacred space that houses a dynamic Taoist community. Winner of the 2016 Governor General's Medal for Architecture.