Heritage Park Museum in Terrace adjusting its operations

Hillary Johnson

Social and physical distancing requirements resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic has the Heritage Park Museum in Terrace, adjusting its operations to comply. Curator Anna Glass acknowledges that summer is the prime season for the museum, as it typically receives federal funding to hire several students to assist in planning events, hosting tours and managing the museum's collection. The pandemic prevents them from hosting major events or tours until groups are again allowed to congregate. Glassassures everyone, they are preparing for multiple scenarios this season. Optimistically, they are taking things day by day.

"So thus far, we have had actually to cancel back in April, our easter egg hunt event, and we are postponing, in collaboration with AFSNO, our St John Baptist Day, which will be rescheduled to September. We have had to hold back out the big opening of the park for this summer while also tiptoeing around what we will be able to provide."

The museum has applied for grant funding to hire summer students. One grant has been approved but with less funding than in previous years. However, Glass holds out hope that a remaining grant application is successful.

"So we plan to have four summer students up here at the park for the summer; two collection technicians, one programmer and one marketing and events coordinator. So our collections technicians would be working primarily on our huge task system, which is to go around, and inventory, take pictures of every single artifact on site. Our programmer, if we are open to the public, would be primarily giving guided tours while also hopefully working in collaboration with local teachers to create an education kit."

With the new, recently purchased database, the museum will be able to host online exhibits that would allow for year-round viewing.

"It means going around and taking pictures of all the artifacts, cataloging them, briefly describing them, who donated them in their context in the history of Terrace. Then to host an online exhibit, we would select a group of items that have a theme to them or one distinct message and would publish that to our own personal website."

Canada Day is another big event that is subject to change, depending on the government restrictions in place at the time. Glass mentions if they are unable to host large gatherings, some activities could be offered online, but with circumstances changing daily, we will all have to wait and see.

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