More amazing days ahead
Museum's Sunday programs explore Yellowknife's past

Cindy MacDougall
Northern News Services

NNSL (Oct 15/99) - If you and the kids are a little bored on Sunday, the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre is offering a way to turn that boredom into amazement.

Called Amazing Family Sundays, the events are held every second to third weekend. The centre encourages people to bring along things that fit the theme.

Wendy Stephenson is co-ordinating the program and said the upcoming themes are planned to keep the excitement level up.

The theme for the next event, Oct. 24, is Yellowknife place names.

"A lot of people don't know the history of the name of their own street," Stephenson said.

Some of the examples of unusual names are Ragged Ass Road, Rat Lake and Tin Can Hill.

Stephenson said museum toponymist Randy Freeman, who studies the traditional names of places in NWT, will explain the origins of the names and answer people's questions on the names of their streets.

"We try to get some aspect of the museum people don't necessarily see everyday," Stephenson said.

"And all of the programs ask people to bring in their own experiences and share."

The first amazing Sunday was a look at traditional dolls on Oct. 10. Children and adults brought their treasured dolls and shared their stories with others.

November's events will look at old photographs of Yellowknife (Nov. 14), and making dioramas, or three-dimensional models (Nov. 28).

The photos are from the Henry Busse collection. Busse took photos of miners, prospectors and others throughout Yellowknife and the NWT during the 1940s, '50s and '60s.

"We're hoping people will bring in their own old photographs and share them," she said. "We're also hoping to identify some of the people in the photographs. Maybe someone will recognize them."

The diorama Sunday will be hosted by the museum's exhibit designer, Terry Pamplin, who will explain how he builds replicas of camps and other scenes, and help participants build their own dioramas.

"Children often build dioramas for social studies classes, so many of them will understand the idea," Stephenson said.

The finale on Dec. 5 will be a celebration of Christmas past. There will be a re-enacting of Northern Christmas tales and a look at holiday decorations and crafts.

"And we'll be having a grand-prize draw that day, too," Stephenson said. "It'll be great."

For more information on the program, please call the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre.