Press Release
For Immediate Release
Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation
Box 1348 Tumbler Ridge, BC V0C 2W0
Contact: Dr Charles Helm, Vice President – 250 242 3984

December 8, 2004

The Sci-tech North Interactive Exhibit - Click to enlarge
A crowd of one hundred and twenty gathered on January 20 for the opening of three new museum exhibits in the Tumbler Ridge Community Centre, followed by an address by Tumbler Ridge palaeontologists Rich McCrea and Lisa Buckley.

Lori Ackerman, Executive Director of Sci-Tech North and Clay Iles, Mayor of Tumbler Ridge, jointly cut the ribbon to open the Sci-tech North Interactive Exhibit. Sci-tech North donated $5000 towards this touch-screen exhibit, which already contains over an hour of footage of Tumbler Ridge’s remarkable palaeontological, natural and human history. This is the product of hundreds of fulfilling volunteer hours by a local team that included Rodger Legault as editor, artist Joan Zimmer, and construction by Ted Antle.

A few highlights are footage from “The Leading Edge” and “BC Moments” recently screened on Knowledge Network and focusing on Tumbler Ridge, a 1927 movie of an expedition through the region including Kinuseo Falls, a tribute to trapper John Terry, remarkable aerial footage of regional waterfalls, a warm welcome from Mayor Iles, and much more.

Ms Ackerman spoke of the importance of the projects of the Museum Foundation for B.C., and indicated how she had stressed this to her contacts across the province including the Premier’s office. Mayor Iles in a forceful speech emphasized how the museum’s work was diversifying the regional and provincial economy, and called upon the provincial government to step up to the plate in support, to ensure sustainability and thus to offload responsibility from the shoulders of the passionate volunteers who so far have seen the project through. He promised to further this process.

Tumbler Ridge matriarch Janet Hartford was called upon to officially provide the “first touch”, and the exhibit was officially open. Thanks to the generosity of Sci-tech North, it truly takes the Museum Foundation initiatives into a new realm.

Down a different corridor in the Community Centre, the Tumbler Ridge Historic Map Exhibit was opened. It features eleven large panels, plotted and printed with the help of Quintette Operating Corporation, starting with the 1879 George Dawson blueprints which show the Tumbler Ridge area as “unexplored region”, through recently discovered 1906 maps which depict it for the first time, to the most modern map (donated by McElhanney Geomatics) and satellite photographs (provided by Ministry of Forests).

Downstairs the Leake portfolio of historic 1939 photographs was opened. Leake was the official photographer of the Monkman Pass Highway and his unrepeatable photos provide a timeless appreciation for the heroic pioneers who tried to build the road through the pass, only to be foiled by the outbreak of World War II.

Sue Kenny of Community Futures presented the Museum Foundation with a plaque celebrating the projects the two organizations have worked on. After a break during which the crowd enjoyed the exhibits, the palaeontological address followed - the first in the 2005 Itchy Feet series in the Tumbler Ridge Public Library. The new website for the Peace Region Palaeontology Research Region ( www.prprc.com ) was announced, along with the Museum Foundation’s new Palaeontology Code of Ethics. Lisa Buckley summarized the exciting discoveries of the 2004 palaeontology season, and Rich McCrea delivered an entertaining lecture on the significance of the dinosaur tracks of the Peace River, many of which are submerged beneath the waters of the dams upstream from Hudson’s Hope.
At the end of this gala evening, the Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation was many steps closer to realizing its vision for the community, region and province.

Mayor Iles, Rose Colledge (TRMF President), Lori Ackerman (Executive director of Sci-tech North), and Dr Charles Helm (TRMF Vice President) at the opening ceremony.


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