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May. 20, 2022 | Friday
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Museum fundraiser lets NOTLers explore Bermuda connections
Gail Lord. (Supplied)

Niagara-on-the-Lake culture buffs can explore historical connections between Bermuda and NOTL on a fundraising trip organized by the Niagara Historical Society and Museum this November.

The trip will cost $4,100 per person based on double occupancy and $5,200 per person for single occupancy.

Applications for the historical society’s excursion are being accepted until May 30.

Gail Lord, president and co-founder of Lord Cultural Resources, said it’s more than just a tour.

“It’s really about people with similar or related histories getting together. I think that’s what people ultimately like about travel. It’s not just about going to see a place. It’s about creating relationships with people,” she said.

Amy Klassen, acting managing director and historical society administrator, said she was to Lord after her company did some work in Bermuda.

“She was down there for a project and she thought there were some real great connections between Bermuda and Niagara-on-the-Lake. There’s the War of 1812 history down there. There’s just a lot of history to the country and culture there that people might want to see,” Klassen said. “So, we decided to put together a package.”

The trip, which is planned for Nov. 14 to 19, will help the museum raise money to cover annual operating costs. The town funds a portion of the operational expenses, but Klassen said the society needs to come up with the rest of the budget.

“The historical society owns and operates the museum. We do get a chunk of money from the town, but the rest is done through admission, fundraising, donations – that sort of thing,” Klassen said.

From the cost of the trip, $500 will go toward operational costs.

Klassen said the trip is a great opportunity for museum members and residents to experience the similarities and differences between NOTL and Bermuda, with exclusive benefits they wouldn’t find on their own.

“There’s really kind of exclusive things that you wouldn’t get if you went on your own. For example, having a candlelight dinner in the museum with members of the National Trust there and with a tour of the museum. There’s a lot of personal tours.”

The museum is about halfway to its goal of signing up 20 people for the trip, Klassen said.

Lord said she liked the idea of connecting Niagara-on-the-Lake with Bermuda, adding that there are many parallels between the culture, people and history of the two places.

“It’s about bridging the gap across the world, reaching out to another country that is steeped in the history of the War of 1812 as well as an extensive black history,” Lord said. “The trip, while also a fundraiser for the Niagara Historical Society and Museum, is about more than raising money.”

Lord said her company has been working on the expansion plan of the historical society for many years. At the same time and purely by coincidence, she said the company was also working on the cultural tourism plan for Bermuda.

Lord Cultural Resources is the largest cultural planning company in the world, she said. Through the extensive reach of her company, she’s been involved with 2,600 museum projects in 57 countries around the world.

She said the Niagara Historical Society and Museum is the best overall mid-sized museum in Canada.

“It’s one of the best, period. It has an excellent collection which it manages very well. It’s very good at storytelling. It’s innovative in its use of digital media. I think it has a very good base of activity in the community.”