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Winter Quarters

Carnivals and shows do not require a permanent space during the operating months. They are continuously on the road. At the end of the season, all of that equipment needs somewhere to go for the winter. Known as winter quarters, these industrial areas act as storage area, repair shop (for carnival rides, tents, and equipment), office (to plan next years’ route), and as a gathering point for carnies returning to work for the first of May.

Black and white photo of a female lion in a cage with two of her cubs feeding off of her

Female Lion Jackie and her Cubs, Circa 1955


Black and white photo of a young Jackie Hauser bottle feeding a black bear cub

Jackie Hauser (née Christmas) with Black Bear Cub, Circa 1950s

Bingo and Jackie wanted to raise their children outside of the city. They also needed a place to house their growing animal menagerie over the winter. Langley, British Columbia, just outside of Vancouver was attractive to them. Land was cheaper and Jackie’s family lived there. In 1957, they found a suitable property on 206th street, two streets over from Jackie’s parents. They purchased the winter quarters for their growing animal show with all the money they had.

Audio clip with transcript: “Purchasing the Property in Langley, BC”

Audio clip with transcript: “The Animals at the Winter Quarters”

They even set up a show locally in town. A meat market called ‘Eddie Jones’ Meat Market’ made a deal with the Hausers to have some of their monkeys swinging around in the shop display window in exchange for meat and bones to feed their animals. It became quite the little attraction in Langley.

Audio clip with transcript: “Eddie Jones’ Meat Market”

Little did they know; this property would become the home base for one of Canada’s largest and longest operating carnivals.

Black and white photo of a young boy playing with a crank five cent digger game, on the machine is says turn right near the controller and coin here where money is put in, people are in the background including an older man behind the boy

WCA 5 Cent Diggers, Circa 1960s