The Royal BC Museum invites the community to spend Family Day with them on Monday, where unique specimens will be on display and admission is free of charge all day. Photo courtesy Royal BC Museum

Family Day an inclusive affair at Royal BC Museum

Special programming, photo ops with unique specimens, free admission on holiday Monday

The Royal BC Museum is inviting you to spend Family Day with them, with special programming and unique displays happening, all free of charge, next Monday (Feb. 12).

“Our main programming that we have planned will be from 1 to 3 p.m. in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition,” says Chris O’Connor, learning program developer at the museum.

Inspired by the museum’s collection of unique specimens, the staff will put them on display for photo opportunities, or to draw and sketch, something O’Connor says a lot of visitors come to do.

“We’ve had as many as 10,000 people come through the museum [on Family Day],” he says, noting many families have turned it into an annual tradition. “It’s insanely busy, but really exciting to have that many people coming to view the exhibits.”

Animation stations will display specimens specific to each gallery and its inhabitants, with artifacts and replicas that visitors can actually touch and feel. It brings a different kind of hands-on learning and a chance for museum staff to showcase its collection in a new and engaging way,” O’Connor says.

Inclusion is important to the museum, he adds, pointing to the Family Bonds and Belonging exhibition last fall that widened the idea of family for the staff and showed them how the definition of family is constantly changing.

“A family isn’t just two parents and kids. A family is a really broad definition of what it means to be a collection of people connected to one another, whether that’s by blood or by choice or by belonging to a community.”

Families come in all shapes and sizes, something O’Connor and his colleagues honour, particularly on Family Day.

“It’s changing all the time and we, as an institution need to respond to that.”

To learn more about the Royal BC Museum and its offerings, check them out online at RoyalBCMuseum.bc.ca.

kristyn.anthony@vicnews.com

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