In 2017 we welcomed over 30,000 visitors, offered free public access to a total of 15 arts and heritage exhibitions, and took part in over 500 programs/events for youth, families, and seniors. Many special events are in partnership with other community organizations. Our C3 (Culture, Cookies, & Coffee) program for seniors has gained strong momentum and become one of our most popular programs. Contemporary art exhibitions featured regional, national, and emerging artists. We contributed to numerous publications, research support to community partners, and online access to over 31,000 historic photos. Volunteers play a key role in our ability to offer programs, serving over 3300 hours in 2017.
In 2017, our exhibition program acknowledged Canada's 150th year of confederation, and we focused on notions of (re)conciliation and decolonization - opportunities to think critically about our colonial history and its legacy. Highlights included Sq'éwlets: A Stó:lõ - Coast Salish Community in the Fraser River, a community-based exhibition that marked the launch of an ambitious web-based project by the same name. We also started a "Community Art Space" to offer an exhibition venue to local culture organizations. Among other initiatives, new programs included Brunch with the Artists and The Reach Art Club in partnership with West Abbottsford Community School. We have taken an important step forward in the stewardship and management of our historical collections though the successful transition to a new collections management platform-Pastperfect-which will streamline information management and provide ease of access to online visitors in the future.