Friday, May 18th is International Museum Day! Living in the City of Ottawa makes it easy to celebrate this wonderful holiday, with more than 25 museums scattered around town. In honour of this day, Volunteer Ottawa is highlighting the museums who are our member organizations, as well as the special events that they are planning.
The Canadian Museum of Nature exhibits the wonders of the natural world, ranging from dinosaurs, gems and birds, to life from under the seas. Housed in the grand old Victoria and Albert museum building, the museum has recently undergone renovations including attaching the modernist glass ‘lightbox” to one side. For International Museum Day, the Canadian Museum of Nature offers free admission all day long.
The Canada Science and Technology Museum presents the world of technology, and how it has affected Canada. The museums prides itself on having plenty of dials, buttons and levers to turn and push, as well as displays filled with historical and interesting artifacts. The museum is currently running the temporary exhibition “Sex: a TELL-all Exhibition,” which discusses sexuality from a scientific standpoint.
The Canada Aviation and Space Museum features exhibits of aircraft and space vehicles that are significant to Canadian history. From the “Silver Dart,” the first aircraft in Canada, to the “McDonnell Douglas” and American built supersonic fighter jet, a period of over 90 years is represented. On Saturdays in May, the Canada Aviation and Space Museum commemorates Operation Manna, in which Canadian pilots drop parcels of food to the starving Dutch during World War II, with print making, model making and kids activities.
The Canada Agriculture Museum celebrates Canada’s farming heritage and provides visitors an opportunity to see what life is like on farm. The museum provides the unique experience of farming right in the heart of the city. Over the May long weekend, the museum is holding a sheep shearing festival. With demonstrations of sheep shearing, sheep herding, sheepdog agility and wool carding, the festival promises to be a flock of fun.
The Diefenbunker was built in 1959 as a refuge for the Canadian government should a nuclear war break out. Nicked-named after Canadian prime minister John Diefenbaker, the facility served as a communications centre for the Canadian armed forces. For International Museum Day, the Diefenbunker is screening the film “Nuclear Roof” about the construction of the bunker, as well as having a show and tell of rarely seen cold war artifacts in the officer’s lounge.
The Nepean Museum presents the history of Nepean township and the stories of Nepeanites caught up in ordinary and extraordinary circumstances. The museum is currently running three exhibitions, “Remembering the Battle of Hong Kong,” “A Helping Hand” and “Our Neighbourhoods, Our Community.”
So go out and visit a museum this Friday, as we recognize the importance of museums all over the world.
Want to get involved? Check out these volunteer opportunities.
Nepean Museum – Special Events Assistant, Victoria Day Jubilee Tea
Nepean Museum – Special Events Assistant – Doors Open Ottawa