Feb 17, 2020

History of Parksville

Incorporated as a village in 1945, a town in 1978 and a city in 1986, Parksville’s main industries are tourism, retail, services, construction and light industry. With a temperate climate and just a half hour drive north of Nanaimo, the City of Parksville is a blend of long-time residents and new arrivals, from young families to retirees with a diversity of backgrounds and vibrancy.

The first settler to this area was John Hirst in 1870. The River as it was known remained an outpost until the turn of the century when a road was built from Nanaimo. A post office soon followed, with mail distributed from the cabin of Nelson Parks, Parksville’s namesake. At that time, logging was a major industry and the extension of the Esquimalt and Nanaimo (E & N) Railway in 1901, spurred Parksville’s growth and the beginning of a tourism boom, mainly Vancouver Islanders who travelled to Parksville to enjoy the incredible beaches. Motels, stores, resorts and campgrounds soon followed and the community continues to prosper today.

Knox Heritage Church

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