News | DrumhellerMail - Page #3140
Last updateFri, 02 Jun 2023 7am

Special exhibition prepared for Tyrrell anniversary


    For 25 years, the Royal Tyrrell Museum has been piecing together stories of the plant and animal life that existed on earth thousands of years ago.
    While collecting bones, along the way they collected quite a few stories of their own.
    On the occasion of the Tyrrell's 25th anniversary, they are getting ready to share those stories with the world.
    Right now, the museum is dedicating the resources of designers, researchers, technicians and virtually every other aspect of its organization in some way to make way for its celebration exhibit, Alberta Unearthed: 25 Stories of Discovery.
    This exhibit will include the most notable specimens, and the stories behind them. It will include a number of discoveries that have almost become lore in the palaeontology world. Leanna Mohan, marketing coordinator for the Royal Tyrrell Museum, says the discoveries are largely from Western Canada.
    “Some are stunning from the scientific value, some are stunning just to look at, and some have great stories,” said Mohan.
    On display will be Black Beauty, the nickname of a Tyrannosaurus Rex discovered in the Crowsnest Pass by a couple  of young men out fishing in the early 1980’s.  Blackened from the mineral deposits over the years, it is a remarkable specimen, and was found about 60 per cent complete. It has only been exhibited a handful of times.
    Another legendary find is the Devil's Coulee nest. In 1987 a young girl from Warner, Alberta found what she believed was a dinosaur eggshell. It was confirmed, and Dr. Phil Currie led a crew to investigate. It was Kevin Aulenbach who stumbled upon the nearly 80 per cent complete nest of a Hadrosaur. What made the find extraordinary is the discovery of intact embryos of the dinosaurs.
    There are 23 more specimens that will be on display when the 2,000 square foot gallery opens May 22, 2010. The finds are from different ages of the museum, as it grew from the unique roots of one of the first museums of its scope outside of a metropolitan area, to the world-renowned educational and research institution it is today.
    Along the way, it was given Royal status, built relationships through international programs and symposiums and has been actively doing research locally and throughout the world.
    Dr. Don Brinkman who, along with Dr. Don Henderson, is taking the scientific lead on the exhibition. Brinkman says, in telling the stories behind the specimens, they are telling the stories of the museum. 
    The exhibition has been in the planning process for about two years, and under active construction for about a year. Luke Webster is the principal designer.
    While the museum is set to open the exhibition in May, the actual anniversary is later in the fall and plans are in the works for a celebration.
    “Our anniversary on September 25 will be a week long celebration,” said Mohan.
    Alberta Arts Days from September 17 to 24 lead up to the anniversary, and will take an active role in the celebration. Look for more details in upcoming issues of The Drumheller Mail.

Tyrrell breaks Family Day record, expecting 10 millionth visitor


    The Royal Tyrrell Museum enjoyed one of its best seasons ever, and it looks like the momentum has continued, judging by the incredible Family Day turn out.
    The museum offered free admission on Family Day, and literally thousands took advantage of the opportunity to discover and rediscover the museum.
    Leanna Mohan, marketing coordinator for the Tyrrell, tells The Mail there were more than 3,200 visitors on Family Day.
    “It was the highest attended Family Day in the last 10 years,” said Mohan, "and 500 visitors were locals.”
    “Last year was a record breaking year for us and for Family Day we had almost one-third more visitors than last year.”
    Overall, it was reported last summer the Tyrrell was at a 15 year high in attendance. The August long weekend saw 17,741 visitors alone.
    Those numbers do add up, and the Museum is anticipating its 10 millionth visitor this coming summer.
    This year the museum is celebrating its 25th anniversary.

Chamber commits $250,000 to community facility


    The Drumheller and District Chamber of Commerce is the latest community group to step forward to support the creation of the Badlands Community Facility.
    The chamber, with a membership of over 200 businesses in the community, has pledged $250,000 over five years to the construction of the community facility. They made the announcement public on Monday, March 1, in the shadow of the World’s Largest Dinosaur.
    “Our board realizes the importance of this facility,” said chamber president Cindy Clark. “The Badlands Community Facility will increase the value of our community as a whole. This is a project we are proud to support and we are encouraging our chamber of commerce members to come forward with their donations to the project.”
    She said the board came out strongly in support of the donation.
    The chamber makes every effort to make Drumheller the best place to visit, live, work and do business.”
    It was fitting the announcement was made at the World’s Largest Dinosaur, because it generated the funds that have been dedicated to the community facility.
    The funds for the donation come from the World’s Largest Dinosaur Legacy Fund, a program set up whereby a portion of the funds raised through visitations to the World’s Largest Dinosaur and a percentage of the sales from the gift shop are directed back into the community. The donations will be made in installments of $50,000 over the next five years.
    “A facility such as this will be a huge benefit for Drumheller and area,” said Heather Bitz, DDCC manager. “This facility will provide another way to attract visitors to Drumheller for sporting events, tournaments, meetings and conferences. This will be an ideal venue to help attract visitors to Drumheller during the shoulder tourism season.”
    She adds, the legacy fund will continue to fund smaller projects. Biannually the World’s Largest Dinosaur Legacy Fund distributes grants, up to $3,000 to community projects. Recently, the funds have gone to the Badlands Artists Association and Communities in Bloom. These funds are distributed in March and September.
    Badlands Community Facility fundraising chairperson, Jeff Hall, commended the chamber of commerce regarding the work they do for the business community and their recent contribution to this facility.
    “The chamber of commerce is a leader in our community. To have an organization like the Chamber commit to this project at this level, shows there is a lot of community support for the project,” said Hall.
    The Badlands Community Facility fundraising committee has a target of $12 million for the complete Badlands Community Facility project. Since November, over $1.7 million has been raised. If you would like to receive more information on sponsorship or pledging opportunities please contact Jeff Hall at 403-823-7800.


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