Courtenay & District Museum

  • Empowered by a Pen
  • Lecture: Inspired by the Island of Fire
  • Tom Peek Writing Workshop
  • VIX Group Boosts Museum's Earth Science Programmes
  • Halloween Celebration
  • Your Membership Makes A Difference
  • Lecture: Life Portraiture with Boomer Jerritt and Karen McKinnon
  • Major Milestone Reached
  • Photo of the Month
  • Gift Shop Update
  • It's All There in Black and White
  • Museum Sponsors
  • Museum Funding

  • Phone:



    Mailing Address:
    207 Fourth Street,
    Courtenay BC,
    V9N 1G7

    Tuesday to Saturday:
    10am – 5pm

    Sunday & Monday:

    John Wilson

    Vice President
    Daryl Wright

    Past President
    April Shopland

    Rick Ross
    Jim Haggart
    Ross Dingwall
    Harry Squire
    Mary Everson

    Elizabeth Braithwaite

    Member of...

    British Columbia Museums Association

    Canadian Museums

    Archives Association of
    British Columbia

    Heritage Society of British Columbia


    Inspired by an Island of Fire--Empowered by a Pen

    For two days, Friday October 18 and Saturday October 19, the Courtenay and District Museum will host special guest author Tom Peek for an evening presentation and morning writer's workshop.

    The Courtenay Museum is one of Peek's two stops in Canada on his tour for his novel Daughters of Fire, which received a 2013 Benjamin Franklin Silver Finalist Award for popular fiction from the Independent Book Publishers Association.


    Lecture: Inspired by the Island of Fire
    Living, Working and Writing on Hawaii's Volcanic Big Island

    Tom Peek with Pu'u Poli'ahu on Mauna Kea

    Time and Date: 7pm, Friday, October 18, 2013
    Location: Rotary Gallery of the Courtenay and District Museum
    Speaker: Tom Peek
    Tickets: $5 per Historical Society member; $6 non-members (plus GST). Advance tickets recommended.

    Hawaii novelist Tom Peek will discuss the natural wonders and rich cultural traditions of the volcanic isle that inspired his award-winning novel Daughters of Fire.

    Peek based some of his writing on his day job for over the past twenty years as an interpreter on the volcanoes of Hawaii Island. There, he's been a mountain and astronomy guide on Mauna Kea and an eruption ranger, fire fighter, and exhibit writer on Kilauea, working closely with Hawaiian elders and cultural practitioners on both volcanoes.

    Click for more Information


    Empowered by the Pen! Tom Peek Writing Workshop

    Time and Date:  9 am to 12:30 pm, Saturday, October 19, 2013
    Location: Dogwood Gallery of the Courtenay and District Museum
    Presenter: Tom Peek
    Tickets: $40 per Historical Society member; $45 non-members + GST. Advance tickets recommended. Early-bird rate by the end of the day October 16 $38.00 + GST. Limited to ten people.

    Get your stories, poems, essays and ideas out of your head and onto the page with this fun and exciting workshop that liberates the writer within you.

    Learn simple but powerful methods to get your pen moving. Peek's unique exercises will stir your creative juices and stimulate the wild regions of your mind. Open to all levels and genres; no previous writing experience is necessary.

    Click for more Details


    VIX Group Boosts Museum's Earth Science Programmes

    The Courtenay and District Museum has received a boost of $5,000 for its earth science programmes from the Vancouver Island Exploration Group (VIX) with the financial assistance of the Association for Mineral Exploration BC (AMEBC).  

    One of the main goals of the VIX is to promote education and best practices in geology and mineral resources; including exploration and mining on Vancouver Island.

    Continue Reading


    Halloween Celebration

    We're hosting a Halloween family event in vintage style on Saturday, October 26 from 11am to 3pm!

    Have a fun time playing "Boo Bowling" or "Pin the Spider on the Web". If you are brave, we dare you to stick your hand into scary “mystery” boxes which are full of things like icky spiders, brains, maggots and eyeballs or witches hair. If your aim is good try throwing a pumpkin in the bucket, or guess how many candies are in a jar.

    We'll also have scary storytelling by Pat Trask, a craft area to make a take home colourful 3D spider and a Halloween goodie sale.

    Admission is by donation of $2 per person (adults and children). Proceeds from donations and the goodie sale will go towards purchasing a larger fish tank for our ever growing African Lungfish named “Pam”.

    So be sure to dress up in your Halloween outfit and fly on over to visit the Courtenay and District Museum.


    Your Membership Makes A Difference

    Purchasing a membership to the Courtenay and District Museum, now in its 52nd year, supports heritage preservation in the Comox Valley through special events, lectures, education programmes, research and exhibitions. Your membership benefits these award winning programmes on a year round basis and we appreciate it!

    Becoming a member provides you with discounts in the gift shop and on lectures and an opportunity to support one of the most active regional museums in British Columbia. Thank you for your support.

    Click here to Join


    Lecture: Life Portraiture with Boomer Jerritt and Karen McKinnon

    Time & Date: 7 pm, Tuesday, November 5, 2013
    Location: Rotary Gallery, Courtenay and District Museum
    Speakers: Boomer Jerritt and Karen McKinnon
    Tickets: $8 per Historical Society member; $10 non-members (plus GST). Advance tickets recommended. Tickets go on sale Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013.

    Are you fascinated with photographing people?

    Join the "yin and yang of photo education instructors" Boomer Jerritt and Karen McKinnon for this entertaining and thought provoking lecture on the storytelling qualities photographers can bring to their portraiture. Discussion on the process and techniques of Boomer and Karen's different portrait styles are interwoven into the presentation.

    If you are a "newbie" or a seasoned photographer or just a person interested in people you will enjoy this spirited and lively discussion and it may even give you a few ideas for your own “life capturing” moments.

    Click for more Information


    Major Milestone Reached

    It's taken over 10 years for Comox Valley Family History Research Group volunteers to reach their goal and complete their BMD newspaper searches.

    That's births, marriages, deaths (BMD) and obituary searches in Comox Valley newspapers from 1895 to 2008.

    The group's current project of indexing these vital events has evolved from visually scanning hard copy newspapers to reading the Comox District Free Press on a microfilm scanner donated to the Courtenay and District Museum by the Bickle family in 2007.

    CVFHRG Projects Coordinator Barb Page explains: "Our volunteers have now completed scanning the films of the Comox District Free Press. We have two typists who are reading the images on computers at home and entering the data in Microsoft XL documents. When a 5-year span has been completed, the file is published on our website under Vital Records."

    To access the vital records visit their website at

    The Comox Valley Family History Research Group meets on the 2nd Tuesday, September to June at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1901 20th Street, Courtenay (enter by the back door) at 7:00 p.m.

    For further information, contact Barbara Page at 250-338-5235 or email


    Photo of the Month

    CDM #990.24.135
    Women's Field Hockey, c. 1905

    You can view more photos like this on our website. Click here to visit our holdings.


    Gift Shop Update

    Already visitors are coming to the gift shop to get a head start on their Christmas shopping. It's no wonder because, if you're shipping parcels overseas, the deadline for surface mail is in October!

    We have some great items that are lightweight and reasonably priced. We've got a new shipment of pot holders and matching tea towels in fabulous bright colours and some lovely designs with native flowers and birds. Or why not pick out an attractively decorated apron or tote bag?

    Good news for the younger folk: we've just received a big shipment of large stuffed toys with everything from stegosaurus to seahorses.

    Remember if you have a museum membership you receive a 15% discount off your purchase.


    It's All There in Black and White

    Here's a rather unique way to raise food and funds during the great depression courtesy of the 1930 Courtenay Free Press.

    Read this newspaper article from our archives

    With legacy support from the Bickle Family and the Comox Valley Echo.


    Museum Sponsors

    Comox Valley Community Foundation
    Judy Hagen
    The Robert Hunt Family
    Bruce McPhee
    Vancouver Island Exploration Group
    Daryl and Evelyn Wright – Francis Jewellers Ltd.

    The Bickle Family
    Comox Valley Echo
    Comox Valley Monarch Lions Club
    Ed LaFleur
    Marjorie Thorpe
    John Wilson and Family

    Elizabeth Braithwaite


    Christine Dickinson
    Coral Dunn
    Dove and Mike Hendren
    Peggy Hildebrandt
    Ted Lovegrove
    Ruth Masters

    D. Mobley
    Jim Peacock
    April Shopland
    Jean & Ian Sibbald
    Roberts & Adela Smith

    If you're considering donating to a charity before the end of the year, please consider the Courtenay and District Museum. Your support goes towards education programmes, lectures and collection management. We provide a tax receipt to donors.

    Please click here to donate


    Museum Funding

    The Courtenay and District Historical Society was registered as a nonprofit society in 1961 to preserve and interpret cultural and natural heritage of the Comox Valley. It has functioned as an independent society since that time. Funds are derived from the generous support of the City of Courtenay, British Columbia Arts Council, Comox Valley Regional District, British Columbia Gaming Branch, and from museum generated revenues and donations.

    Proud sponsors of the Courtenay & District Museum:

    The City of Courtenay

    BC Arts Councils

    Regional District Comox-Strathcona