Museum society chooses executive for year

Kirk Vander Ploeg
Manager, Hay River Heritage Centre
Holds a sign-in book for visitors to the museum.

The Hay River Museum Society has confirmed a new board of directors and executive.

Brad Mapes is back for another year as chairperson of the group.

The other members of the executive are vice-chairperson Linda Carter, secretary Tom Lakusta and treasurer Eileen Hamilton.

They were chosen after the group’s annual general meeting on April 22.

The process is that the society members select the board of directors, and the board meets just after the AGM to select the executive.

Along with the members of the new executive, the new board of directors includes Terry Tregidgo, Judy West-Pratt, Sheila Cook, Vicky Latour and Myrtle Graham.

Fourteen people showed up for the AGM.

In his year-end report as chairperson, Mapes noted there was an increase in the number of visitors to the Hay River Heritage Centre, which the society operated from May 10 to Dec. 15 last year.

“We had a total of 2,600 visitors, an 85 per cent increase from 2015,” he said, adding it was great to see the numbers go up.

The chairperson also pointed out 11 well-attended special events were held at heritage centre.

Plus, he added several improvements were made to the museum, such as two flights of stairs, a deck, exit doors at the back of the building and a storage shed.

In addition, there was painting and landscaping outside the building.

The society also purchased a public address system.

“That is definitely something that we needed so that we could hold different events,” said Mapes.

New signage was also purchased which will be erected all over town to guide visitors to the heritage centre. Some of the signs have already been put up.

Over 60 new items were also donated to the museum, including an old fire truck.

Mapes also noted the museum society’s new website is ready to go.

The chairperson pointed out that the Super A roundup was a great event for the museum society, collecting about $12,000.

In the upcoming year, the society will be exploring obtaining non-profit status so it can provide tax receipts to donors.

In addition, a lawyer is currently looking at the process to change the society’s election bylaws, which currently sees all directors chosen for one-year terms. Under the possible change, some would serve for two-year terms to ensure continuity on the board.

At the meeting of the board of directors, the opening date this year for the Hay River Heritage Centre was set as May 19.

The board also discussed the procedures to ensure that the centre will be open next March during the 2018 South Slave Arctic Winter Games. During that time of year, the centre is closed for the winter season.