Place Category: Museums & Heritage Sites
The Parksville Museum and Heritage Village is a popular destination for visitors and locals alike, presenting the history of Parksville and surrounding communities of Nanoose, Parksville, Errington, Coombs, Hilliers, and French Creek.
Situated off Highway19, just south of downtown Parksville, the Museum is located on the traditional territory of the Snaw-naw-as people and was later part of the original Jim Craig farm on Craig Bay.
The Museum got its beginnings in 1976 when the 1912 St. Knox Church in downtown Parksville was saved from demolition by the defiant act of a Parksville woman, who lay herself down between the church and the oncoming bull-dozer. This first protest was the catalyst to preserving the church and having it moved to a vacant lot. The people who came together to save this historical church were the founding members of the Parksville & District Historical Society, registered under the Societies Act in 1976..
Six years later in 1983, the City of Parksville provided land to the Society and the arrival of the church heralded the beginning of the Museum. A collection of 9 other important historical buildings followed over the next 10 years. The Englishman River Building, built by dedicated community volunteers, houses the main Exhibit Hall, the Archives, Administration offices, storage, gift shop and a large multi-purpose meeting room.
The historical buildings are set around a central courtyard, creating a Heritage Village which hosts a Farmer’s/Artisan Market every summer and many other special events such as Multi-Cultural Day (June), outdoor Movie Nights (summer), Railway Days (August) and an Old-Fashioned Christmas (December). The Museum also hosts a Seasonal Speaker Series, a Coast Salish Artisan Market (June) and a Valentine Vintage Market (February). Check out the Blacksmith Shop to see live demonstrations.
Our primary mandate is to collect, preserve, and display artifacts and archival materials that pertain to the history of Parksville and region. Over the last 35 years, the Museum has aquired an expansive collection of unique artifacts collected by local citizens that help us illustrate the lives and activities of the early settlers, organizations and businesses of the local communities. . The Museum also seeks to preserve local heritage through the telling of our stories from First Nations to present day. Discover some of these stories in 4 Oral History videos featuring interview excerpts from descendants of the early families blended with archival photos.
If you are looking for a tasteful space for meetings, party’s, etc., the Museum rents its main meeting room with attached kitchen, and our heritage St. Knox Church is the perfect place for a quaint wedding with seating up to 90 people.
There is something for everyone at the the Parksville Museum and Heritage Village.
The Museum is open June through September and for special events during the rest of the year. We are located at 1245 East Island Highway, Parksville, BC. V9P 2E5
Visit us at www.parksvillemuseum.com and on FACEBOOK