If you ever travel to Port Townsend, Washington, chances are good that you will encounter Gabriel and Sarah Chrisman, residents there in this well-preserved Victorian seaport on the Olympic Peninsula of Washington and one of my regular getaways.
I've met them many times in Port Townsend, WA, over the last fifteen years or so, and this extremely polite and intelligent couple are always wearing attire that was in vogue in the late 1800's. They are also willing to stop and chat for a while, taking a break from shopping, riding their Victorian-era bicycles or casually strolling the downtown, as visitors and residents to this town do on nice days.
And, no, they don't ask for tips or hold out their hats for loose change. This is their life and their lifestyle, not just a gimmick for cash.
Butchart Gardens apparently invoked their "no period costumes" rule and kicked out this couple while they were celebrating their 14th wedding anniversary there.
On warm sunny days in the gardens you will find a wealth of costumes that one might find much more offensive and/or distracting than this couple is wearing. I know I have been distracted (usually in a good way), by colorful and elaborate Korean wedding dresses, extremely short shorts, low-cut halter tops and many other "costumes" people wear in the gardens, some for religious reasons and some definitely secular.
I would argue that everything we wear are "period costumes," some styles changing more rapidly than others. I know I often find myself saying, "didn't that go out in the 1980's?"
I'm sure this couple will deal with the disappointment of not having lunch at the gardens. There are many fine restaurants in Victoria, most of them better and less expensive than the touristy one there. And, while an icon of Victoria tourism, I've been there and done that, and I've had my fill of Butchart Gardens.
You'll have more fun in Port Townsend, WA, anyway, and maybe you'll get to meet this delightful couple while you are there.