TUMBLER RIDGE, B.C. – Officials with the Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation say that after being closed since March due to financial difficulties, the Tumbler Ridge Museum was able to reopen its doors last weekend.
Foundation spokesperson Dr. Charles Helm said that the Museum was able to reopen on June 14th after the Foundation was able to secure additional funding in the past couple of months. In early May, the District of Tumbler Ridge, which had denied the Museum’s application for $200,000 in grant funding earlier this year, offered the Foundation $50,000 to open five days a week during the summer tourist season. This followed a ‘challenge grant’ of $50,000 from The Dalglish Family Foundation, challenging government and other funding sources to contribute funds, with the Foundation’s goal to raise $150,000.
Dr. Helm said that over $20,000 was pledged by the attendees of the Drugs, Dinos and Dinner Medical Conference held in Tumbler Ridge earlier this month. Kelly McManus and Roachelle LaPrairie pledged a substantial personal donation, supported by sizeable contributions from LaPrairie Crane and Northland Fleet. The Lions Club of Tumbler Ridge then came forward with a further major contribution. Coupled with a contribution from the District of Tumbler Ridge, Dr. Helm said that the goal had been reached.
Dr. Tom Perry, a Vancouver medical specialist who led the pledge drive at the 3D Medical Conference, said he was excited that visitors to Tumbler Ridge helped raise a substantial contribution toward keeping the museum open.
“The Peace River Palaeontology Research Centre and Tumbler Ridge Museum are not just provincial, but national treasures,” said Dr. Perry. “I think that the doctors, pharmacists and other health professionals attending our course recognized the tremendous value of this resource for science and education, and want to see it thrive over the long term.”
Dr. Helm said that the Foundation’s long-term goal remains to work with municipal and regional governments to secure stable funding from the Province.