Black Press Media’s best photos of 2020

Black Press Media's 2020 photos of the year.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused many businesses around the province to temporarily close. Among them were gyms and fitness centres, which when they did eventually reopen in May, did so with strict health precautions in place. Some of these precautions included limiting the machines individuals could use to work out, and cordoning off entire areas from the public. (Phil Mclachlan/Penticton Western News)
"I took this photo for the Oct. 29 issue of the Creston Valley Advance. The local independent movie theatre, the Tivoli Theatre, had a soft-opening on Oct. 26, after having been closed since March. When I arrived for the event, masked theatre employee Noah Doyle was just sitting alone in the ticket booth, not a customer in sight. He just looked so helpless, isolated and deserted. I think this photo speaks to how a lot of local businesses and industries, such as the movie theatre industry, have been left feeling alone and abandoned this past year. The film industry has been hit hard by COVID-19, and it looks like our movie-going experience is fading away as a result." (Aaron Hemens/Creston Valley Advance)
A dance studio owner in Williams Lake adjusts to COVID-19 restrictions. It looks like she is making the best of the situation. (Monica Lamb-Yorski/Williams Lake Tribune)
Nobody out in Kimberley but the bear cubs in April. (Brian Hay/Contributed to Kimberley Bulletin)
In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, shoppers from large centres descended on smaller, more rural communities to buy goods such as toilet paper, disinfectant, and hand sanitizer that were sold out in cities. Safety Mart Foods in Ashcroft was no exception; on March 21, the cupboard was bare for anyone looking for tissues, paper towels, and toilet paper. (Barbara Roden/Ashcroft-Cache Creek Journal)
The downtown fire in Mission destroyed three businesses and impacted many more. The massive smoke cloud could be seen for miles and shows that you don't need flames to show the destruction that can be caused by a blaze. It was one of the most read stories in Mission. (Kevin Mills/Mission City Record)
"2020's election was tumultuous, particularly in Chilliwack-Kent and especially with all the controversies that arose from Laurie Throness's statements. There are no parties, no pomp and circumstance, just watching the results, isolated from the usual parties, looking to an uncertain future," says Adam Louis, editor at Agassiz Harrison Observer. (Laurie Throness/Facebook)
(Laurie Tritschler/Grand Forks Gazette)
"It is a representation of multiple issues that came up in 2020, First Nations sovereignty for resources in the Discovery Islands, COVID-19, social issues and the environment. This is especially poignant considering the recent decision on the Discovery Islands fish farms in question." (Marc Kitteringham/Campbell River Mirror)
"Who doesn't need a little puppy love on Valentine's Day and every day for that matter." (Sheri Regnier/Trail Times)
"This photo was taken at the Tofino anti-racism rally on June 8. It won a local Sustainable Development Goals Photo Contest as part of the SDG Global Week of Action. Hundreds of peaceful demonstrators gathered at the Tofino Village Green for this rally, and I feel this photo of a boogie boarder walking through the crowd holding the sign 'Chantel deserved help not bullets' captures the atmosphere of the community." (Nora O'Malley/Tofino Ucluelet Westerly News)
Eli Bell, from White Salmon, Wash., and Brooklyn Schulz, from Abbotsford, reconnected in Peace Arch Park on a Sunday in early June. The park separating Canada and the U.S. became a popular meeting spot for cross-boundary couples and family members shortly after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau closed the border to all but essential traffic. After the Canadian side of the park was closed, people began to flock to the U.S. side of the park, which continues to welcome visitors from Canada. (Aaron Hinks/Peace Arch News)
"A sign that a year ago would have been very unique to a business but became sewn into the fabric of restaurant culture in 2020." (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Rob and Sarah Thibault load their vehicle after stocking up on bottled water, canned goods and bread-making supplies at the South Surrey Superstore, where some were waiting as long as an hour in line. (Tracy Holmes/Peace Arch News)
Four-year-old Ethan Fritz waves at his dad with his mom Alyssa, Aug. 7, from the end of White Rock Pier. Pilot TK Minzak – who flies reserve for the U.S. Air Force, organized the fly-by after months of not being able to see Ethan due to border restrictions during the pandemic. The approach of a U.S. military aircraft caught more than a few White Rock residents and visitors off-guard. (Tracy Holmes/Peace Arch News)
Tilly Knowles and Tina Derksen exchange a hug at the precautious station provided during a parking lot coffee house hosted by the Old Age Pensioners Organization and the Seniors Activity Centre on Monday. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo/Williams Lake Tribune)
Sonnet L’Abbé, one of the organizers of the Black Lives solidarity demonstration at Maffeo Sutton Park in Nanaimo, raises her fist during one of the speeches. (Greg Sakaki/Nanaimo News Bulletin)
Dawn Dickson, a resident at Berwick on the Lake Retirement Community, grooves on her balcony during a dance-off. Dickson and her neighbours were answering a challenge from Berwick Qualicum Beach. (Karl Yu/Nanaimo News Bulletin)
"To me this photo represents a turning point in society. What seemed like such an alien thing at the time (isolation) has, over time, become almost normal." (Phil McLachlan/Penticton Western News)
Grant Keefer, owner of Yellow Point Cranberries, pulls a boom into position as he rounds up cranberries floating atop the water in a flooded field at the farm located in Yellow Point south of Nanaimo. (Chris Bush/Nanaimo News Bulletin)
British Columbia provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry wears a pair John Fluevog shoes designed in her honour, as she views her image at the Murals of Gratitude exhibition in Vancouver, on Friday, July 3, 2020. The business improvement association in Vancouver's Gastown neighbourhood honoured Dr. Henry on Friday with a sneak peek at a mural exhibition featuring her image. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Millie, a trainee service dog, sits with her volunteer Adriana Chiossone while riding a bus during a training exercise at the Vancouver Transit Centre bus depot, in Vancouver, on Wednesday, July 22, 2020. Approximately two dozen dogs participated in training exercises on different types of buses as part of a one-day training program organized by B.C. & Alberta Guide Dogs and Translink, to accelerate training that has fallen behind due to COVID-19. Volunteers who help raise and train the dogs from seven-weeks-old to 15-months have been limited in the amount of public training they can do due to the coronavirus pandemic. The dogs that go through training later become paired with veterans or first responders dealing with PTSD, children who have autism, guides for the blind or enter the charity's breeding program. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
"This Pitt Meadows firefighter was already putting his life on the line before COVID-19 reared its ugly head. Here he is decked out in full PPE in April." (Colleen Flanagan/Maple Ridge News)
"This school had a novel way to send its grads off during an unusual year." (Maple Ridge Christian School submitted to Maple Ridge News)
Priest in residence, Father Nick Meisl listens to a physically distanced confession in a parking garage at St. Patrick's Parish in Vancouver, Wednesday, April 8, 2020.  THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

In mid-March, the day-to-day hustle and bustle of everyday life in British Columbia came to a halt.

Like the rest of the world, B.C. streets grew quiet as business owners shuttered their doors and many of us took refuge in the comfort of our homes.

But quarantining wasn’t the full story – and looking back on this year, a lot of life was still lived.

We asked our reporters from across Black Press Media to reflect on the year and share their favourite pieces of work. These are some of our best news photographs which chronicled 2020.

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Best of 2020

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(Pixabay photo)
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Your morning start for Friday, May 7, 2021

A structure at Highway 97 and Road 1 went up in flames Thursday night. (Oliver Fire Department)
Building in Oliver goes up in flames

Power was distrupted in parts of town while the fire was going Thursday night

The Primary Urgent Care Centre on Martin Street officially opened on March 31, 2021. (Brennan Phillips)
Okanagan-Similkameen Regional Hospital District reverses funding decision on care centre

Approval now granted to fund $1 million for Urgent and Primary Care Centre in Penticton

Pharmacist Barbara Violo arranges all the empty vials of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines that she has provided to customers at the Junction Chemist which is an independent pharmacy during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto, on Monday, April 19, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C.’s 1st vaccine-induced blood clot case detected in Interior Health

Interior Health also recorded 52 new cases of COVID-19

Motorists breaking travel rules can be fined $230 for failing to follow instructions or $575 if the reason for travel violates the essential travel health order, at this Highway 3 check area near Manning Park. Photo RCMP
RCMP begin checking drivers on BC highways

Four check points are set up Thursday May 6 around the province

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

Junior A team Coquitlam Express is offering all Tri-City residents who get vaccinated against COVID-19 a free ticket to one of their games. (Facebook/Coquitlam Express)
B.C. hockey team offering free tickets to hometown fans who get the COVID-19 vaccine

‘We know the only way to get fans back is people getting vaccinated,’ says Express’ general manager Tali Campbell

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon speaks in the B.C. legislature, describing work underway to make a small business and tourism aid package less restrictive, Dec. 10, 2020. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s latest COVID-19 restrictions cost thousands of service jobs

Part-time workers set back again by spike in virus spread

The Tolko Mill in Kelowna on Feb. 2, 2018. (File)
Tolko receives extension for environmental assessment of defunct Kelowna mill

The extension gives Tolko time to decommission, remove structures at the site

Fun 4 All Pet Resort is closed for two weeks following a COVID-19 outbreak among staff. (Fun 4 All photo)
COVID closes Vernon dog daycare

Two staff members test positive at dog boarding centre

A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Leaked report shows detailed B.C. COVID-19 data not being released to public

Documents obtained by the Vancouver Sun show cases broken down by neighbourhoods

Abbotsford school board trustee Phil Anderson has stepped down after sharing an offensive image on Facebook. (File photo)
Abbotsford trustee temporarily steps down after sharing post relating COVID masks to slavery

Phil Anderson to receive training to better understand provincial mask mandate after posting picture

B.C. announced the launch of an app May 7 that connects youth struggling with mental health and substance use with “life-saving” social services. (Screen grab)
5 years in the making: Mental health app for youth and children launches in B.C.

The province provided $1.6-million to fund a virtual care platform

Spring Valley Seniors Community long-term care home. (Google)
Three people die as COVID-19 cases continue to climb in Kelowna care home

Outbreak was declared at Kelowna’s Spring Valley long-term care home on April 28

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