Fort Ostell Museum has officially opened its doors for the 2008 summer season. The museum is located at the North end of Centennial Park and has made a lot of new changes to the exhibits in preparation for the upcoming tourist season. Also new this year is a display featuring pink depression glass as part of the general store set up.
“We have some very unique displays of pioneer times and Aboriginal artifacts,” said Barb Greshner, museum manager.
She thinks that one of the assets of the museum is the fact that it can be toured in a short time period.
“All of our exhibits are organized in neat littler packages. We try not to overwhelm people when they come to visit,” said Greshner. “People really like our museum because of the set up.”
The museum is open Tuesday to Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sundays from 1 to 5 p.m. and closed on Saturdays and Mondays. The first museum was started in a wood frame building in 1967 in the park and during 1979, Ponoka’s 76th birthday, the museum started a fundraising project to build a new museum. A new concrete building was opened in 1981.
In 2004 the museum brought out of storage the collection now called the ‘History of the Care of the Mentally Ill in Alberta.’ Greshner says that this is one of the most popular features in the museum and often gives nursing students tours of the collection.
The museum also has displays on the history of Ponoka, native culture, military life, pioneer lifestyle including a kitchen, parlor, sports and recreation, sewing, school room and much more.
History is alive and well at Fort Ostell Museum and it is an interesting place to take a step back into the history of Ponoka.
The museum will be very busy this summer with many different events.
On May 24 and 25 it will host the Ponoka Art Show, June 27 after the Ponoka Stampede parade they will host a lunch, July 18 is their Victorian Tea, Aug. 1 is the Heritage Tea honouring our Filipino community and they will be participating in the County Fair on Aug. 8 with butter making and hand washing clothes.