By Leah Batisse,
Curator Whistler Museum
On behalf of the Whistler Museum and Archives Board of Trustees.
As the repository of Whistler's history and a proud teller of our resort community's stories, the Whistler Museum is now writing the next chapter in its own exciting story with a public open house today.
There have been many changes at the Whistler Museum in the past months. However, the museum is heading in an exciting new direction. The museum will re-open today, 11 a.m. - 7 p.m., after almost two years of closed doors, showcasing our new facilities and our exciting new exhibit, Whistler's Olympic Journey .
The new exhibit features a variety of innovative and engaging spaces, including a small theatre/storytelling place and the centerpiece, the Hall of Characters, illustrating the story of the people who have made Whistler what it is today. There are also interactive displays that feature the natural environment and geological history.
The Whistler Museum and Archives Society was created through the efforts of Florence Petersen and a group of dedicated volunteers. The intent is to preserve the pioneer and early history of Whistler, highlighting the people and places that make this area great.
The museum opened its doors in the fall of 1986. The museum strives to be a full member of this community. To fulfill this mission, we offer quality programming to the community, comprehensive interpretive exhibits, archival research services, photograph reproductions, school programs, speaker series and funding scholarship awards. The museum has partnerships with the Whistler Naturalists and is involved with the Forest History Project in an effort to focus on our unique, natural history.
The museum follows the Master and Marketing Plans developed over the past five years to guide our direction and we expect the community will be delighted with the results.
Our film project Community Now is showcased in the museum as part of our ongoing program. In addition, there is a small gift shop and archival research space. The new museum is available for hosting functions and private parties and is an excellent venue for a unique get-together. These new and exciting opportunities emphasize the passion this community has for Whistler's heritage and gives visitors an authentic Whistler experience.
The museum continues to provide programming for the children in the community through a variety of educational programs. As well, our special events, such as a night in the park with Michael Allen and the story of Whistler's bears, are great successes. Our family Lego event is a staple at the Whistler Children's Art Festival and is always a popular family event. Icon Gone is moving into its fourth season and will undoubtedly provide the community with another great debate about what is the most famous Icon in the resort history. We continue to host daily walking tours of the village, which are very popular.
Through a variety of programs and services, Whistler's story, a story we are all part of, is celebrated and preserved. As part of our commitment to the community, we continue to be an active Whistler2020 partner and members of the Arts, Culture and Heritage community task force. We continue to look for opportunities to identify efficiencies by collaborating with our partners.
I have recently joined the museum after relocating from Ottawa. I have an extensive background, having worked with the City of Ottawa Archives, Library and Archives Canada and the Bank of Canada Archives. I am thrilled to be joining the museum team at this exciting time in Whistler's history and I look forward to becoming a member of this unique and wonderful community.
The Whistler Museum and Archives Society belongs to this community and we appreciate all the help and support you have provided us along the way. We are committed to the past, but so very excited about the future of this museum and look forward to seeing you walk through our doors in December.
To learn more about actions which are moving Whistler toward our 2020 vision, or to get involved, go to whistler2020.ca