Kids Summer Camp Program

To add to downtown Courtenay’s 2015 summertime fun, the Courtenay and District Museum and Palaeontology Centre is presenting two childrens’ summer camp programs in alternating weeks throughout July and August. These camps will provide fun and interactive opportunities for kids ages 5-9 to learn about dinosaurs, reptiles, and fossils through activities and crafts that encourage thinking, moving, and creatively exploring the museum’s palaeontology exhibits and collections.

In the first program, Sea, Sky and Land—Life in the Dinosaur Age, camp-goers will learn about the various reptiles and dinosaurs that existed in the dinosaur age, and about the habitats they adapted to. Each day will feature a different habitat; land, ocean, and sky, and explore how reptiles survived in these surroundings and competed with other animals alive at the time. Participants will also be able to see and learn about locally-found fossils from 80 million year old ocean environments.
For ages 5-9, running July 7-10, July 21-24, August 4-7 and August 18-21.

Where’d you go Dinosaur? is the second program and focuses on showing students how dinosaurs came to be millions of years ago. From the dawn of the dinosaurs, through their evolution and eventual extinction 65 million years ago, to discovering why fossils exist now, and what they reveal about these ancient creatures, day-campers experience miniature fossil digs, create volcanoes and make crafts to take home.
For ages 5-9, running July 14-17, July 28-31, August 11-14, and August 25-27.

Both camps $60, Tuesday to Thursday from 9:30 am to 12 pm. Fridays are optional. For an additional $20 a child and one guardian have the opportunity to go on a Fossil tour from 9am to 12pm. They will need their own transportation.

Note: Museum members receive a 15% discount on the programs.

For all of the details please visit our Summer Kids Program page or contact us at 250-334-0686 ext 5

Centennial Exhibition

Join us on Saturday, June 27 from 1:00 – 3:00 pm for the opening of the museum’s City of Courtenay Centennial Exhibition which includes historic panels covering Courtenay’s last 100 years created by the City of Courtenay Heritage Commission. This is a great chance to celebrate Homecoming Week, to meet and greet and to enjoy light refreshments. We look forward to seeing you!

Spring Fling and Easter Things Event


We hope you can join us for our annual spring event on Saturday, March 28 from 11 am to 2 pm. Admission is by donation with half of the proceeds going to the Shamrock Gumboots 4-H Club.

There is a lot of family fun planned within the three hours. You can meet lambs, kids (baby goats), ducks, geese and chickens – all courtesy of the Shamrock Gumboots 4-H Club. We will also be visited by the Hot Chocolates Rabbit between 12 noon and 1 pm and he will be handing out delicious Easter chocolate. The Elasmosaur mascot will be making an appearance for fun photo opportunities. And, the popular Gillian from Detailed Face Painting will be here to paint faces for a small fee.

Don’t forget to bring along your decorating skills to join in the colouring contest. Other games will include a Dinosaur Egg Hunt with a twist and “Guess How Many Treats” contest.

Curious Kids Club

The Courtenay and District Museum is creating a Curious Kids Club on Saturdays for children between the ages of 5 and 12 years.

Starting November 29th children will meet at the Museum from 10:00 am -12:00 noon (a perfect time for mom and dad to scout out the Farmers’ Market across the street at the Native Sons Hall).

The first three sessions will uncover some of the mysteries behind Christmas.

  • November 29th- Old School Entertainment: Making Pioneer Toys
  • December 6th – Christmas Crafts: Decorations Then and Now
  • December 13th- Lighting Up the Past: Tin Can Lanterns

These are drop-in classes on a first come, first served basis. Cost is $2 per child or FREE with a Museum family membership. Maximum of 12 kids per class.

Tales of Kona the Guide Dog

photo_dog On Saturday, December 13, from 12:00-3:00, Paul Horgen, Retired Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto and active community contributor will share his new children’s book, Tales of Kona the Guide Dog. Kona will accompany Paul. This is a great opportunity to meet Paul and Kona, to learn more about guide dogs and to find a perfect gift for children. A portion of the proceeds from Paul’s book sales will go to BC & Alberta Guide Dog Services and to Project Watershed Society.

Here’s a review from William Thornton, Founder & CEO, BC Guide Dogs

“I am quite certain, the Tales of Kona will captivate young readers as well as parents, teachers and others that will be reading the book together at home and in school.”

Please join us!

Lecture: Tofino and Clayoquot Sound

Book cover webpage


Time and Date: 7 pm, Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Location: Rotary Gallery of the Courtenay & District Museum
Speakers: Margaret Horsfield and Ian Kennedy
Tickets: $5 for Historical Society members; $6 for general public (plus GST). Advance tickets recommended. Tickets can be purchased over the phone by calling 250-334-0686 ext 5.

Clayoquot Sound, on the West Coast of Vancouver Island, is not only a place of extraordinary raw beauty, but also a region with a rich heritage and fascinating past.

Click Here to Read More

Elasmosaur Birthday & Christmas Party



Two celebrations equals twice the fun!


On Saturday, November 22nd from 11 am – 4 pm, the museum is inviting the community to drop by for a visit and share some cheer.

Elasmosaur and fossil related activities will include dinosaur movies, fossil exhibits and a chance to talk to paleo experts for fossil identification.

For those in a more Christmas frame of mind there will be a chance to make children’s Christmas crafts and enjoy a reading of “The Dinosaurs’ Night Before Christmas”.

Or maybe you’d just like to come by for some cake or Christmas goodies and enter your name for a chance to win a door prize!

Gillian from Detailed Face Painting will also be on hand to add some colour to the day. There is a $5 charge per face.

Admission to this event is free to any family that brings in either a new or gently used unwrapped toy for Santa’s Workshop or a food donation for a local food bank.

Would Our Mothers Have Called Them Heritage Crafts?

Coming Fall 2014!

There’s a new spin on knitting, crocheting, weaving and many other domestic crafts. In some circles, they’re now called heritage crafts. Works for us. Because heritage is the business we love. That’s why we’re going to be presenting knitting, fiber days and general craft days throughout the fall. Stay tuned to our
September newsletter for more information on these activities.

Fall School Programmes


Keeping it Current—and Historic!

With the help of Aleta Salmon, Summer Programme Coordinator, the museum is rolling out a whole new line-up of programming for students for the 2014-2015 school year.

Currently, the museum is strong on presenting programmes in the earth sciences. Added to this, museum staff are working on revamping and creating new programming in settlement history, First Nations and general natural history to match education curriculum for varied grade levels.

We’re looking forward to a busy fall and winter season! More information will be available on this programming by the end of August and we’ll be sending out a special email with full descriptions.

Annual General Meeting: 53 Years and Counting

The Courtenay and District Historical Society will host its Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, September 10th beginning at 6:30 pm in the museum’s Rotary Gallery.  

Fifty three years ago, in 1961, founders of the Courtenay and District Historical Society began the organization with a regional mandate to create the Courtenay and District Museum (CDM) in order to collect, preserve and interpret cultural and natural heritage of the Comox Valley. Core values of the museum encompass integrity, inclusiveness, community service, rigorous research, objective interpretation and public outreach.

Up to 1987, a diverse group of volunteers managed the governance and everyday operation of the museum. Archaeologist Katherine Capes was a founder, along with Ben Hughes, Editor of the Comox Argus, and First Nations leaders Chief Andy Frank and Robert Clifton, and many others from the community. The Board has always included an elected member of the K’ómoks First Nation.

Today, the museum has a full and part time staff of seven. Each summer the museum hires students from Young Canada Works, Service Canada and K’ómoks First Nation. Participation from high school work experience students is also an important part of the museum’s focus on education and mentoring. Volunteers continue to play a vital role and several volunteers work in specific curatorial areas on a weekly basis.

Congratulations and thank you to the board members, society members, staff, volunteers and visitors who continue to make the museum a vital heritage resource.