Regina’s Civic Museum will be closing its doors on Aug. 31 after 55 years of preserving the history of Regina.
It holds such artifacts as photos from the Regina Riot, a pane of stained glass that survived the 1912 tornado, and the first ever ATM.
“It’s not definite, what it is, is a red flag. We’ve been talking with the city for the last couple years, saying, ‘Listen, we don’t have a sustainable operating budget,'” said museum president Rob Deglau.
For many, the announcement of the closing was the first people heard of the museum.
“That’s the conundrum. We didn’t have enough budget to even advertise,” said Deglau, adding that they had just enough money to keep the facility open, and were otherwise relying on volunteers.
“The Civic Museum, for a number of years, has been running on a budget that wasn’t sustainable,” said Deglau. He says their current budget is comparable to small town museum, like in Edenwold, and he would like to see their museum on par with civic museums in North Battleford, Swift Current, and Moose Jaw.
Going forward, Deglau says the city has to ask whether a museum dedicated to the history of Regina is needed or wanted.
If it is, then a sustainable budget and reworking of their current space could be in order.
“What should it look like? Is it a static museum were you come visit? Is some of it virtual? Does it go on displays?” said Deglau, speculating as to what the museum could become.
Otherwise, the 19,000 artifacts preserved by the museum will either be sent to other museums, or given away. Because the items are held in public trust, no profit can be made from them, said Deglau.
The museum is at 1375 on Broad Street for all those interested in seeing the collection.