Doors Open 2024 a Smashing Success

SATURDAY, MAY 25, 2024  11 am to 4 pm
7C with 13 km/hr winds and a slow drizzle off and on all day

This event featured an outdoor and indoor Book Sale.  A Raffle.  A Door Prize.  Free Tours.  Free Genealogy Research opportunities all day.

Our volunteers were in early to prepare for the activities of the day.  It was quite cool and brisk at 9:30 am when we started to set up the outdoor tents for the Book Sale and it did not improve much throughout the day—but that did not stop our intrepid volunteers.  Volunteer Heather Anderson is the lead MGS Project person for our ongoing Book Sales.  The team gathered at 9:30 am in the parking lot to set up the tents, tables, and unbox the books—Heather and Eric Anderson, Kathryn Blair-Colbert, and Angela Fiebelkorn.

We were so gratified to see how VERY well attended this event was!  Manitobans, echoing the pioneering spirit of their ancestors, braved the howling wind, cold temperatures and rain to attend our outdoor book sale!  And of course they then visited the Resource Centre to get a tour and do some research.  An assortment to dainties were available in the kitchen for our guests, thanks to Kathryn Blair-Colbert, MGS Fundraising Chair, who organized our Doors Open fundraising activities. Our indoor volunteers were Jessica Burleson, Kathy Kristjansson, Gloria McNabb, Rick Brown, Daryl Dumanski, Carol, Bill Curtis, and Aleta Foreman.  They were kept hopping as we had many visitors.

It was heart warming to hear so many visitors comment on just how much they enjoyed their visit, thanks to our friendly and enthusiastic volunteers. The excitement from several that found their relatives in our local history books and online resources was contagious. As a result, we welcomed 3 new members today and renewed another that was inactive for some time—and two of them took out branch memberships.

The weather did not want to cooperate for our outdoor book sale but we made the most of it. Hoping for much less wind and some sun for day 2!

Sunday, May 26, 2024 1 – 4 pm
High of 18C with a cool breeze and sunshine

Day 2 of Doors Open Winnipeg was another busy one! Once again, the Book Team gathered at noon to set up the tent, tables and unbox the books. The team consisted of Heather and Eric Anderson, Kathryn Blair-Colbert, Vivian Sullivan, and Angela Fiebelkorn.  Special thanks to both Rick Brown and Rick Walker, MGS volunteers for helping out the outdoor team.

Volunteers Heather Anderson, Rick Brown, and Angela Fiebelkorn

We had a steady stream of visitors to both the outdoor book sale as well as to our indoor activities.  Our visitors took advantage of our Vivid-Pix software to fix old photographs, researched their family both online and through our many local community history books, and the two computers that have NewspaperArchives had steady users throughout the afternoon.  We would like to thank and acknowledge our indoor volunteers: Bill Curtis, Rick Walker, Bob Allebone, Gloria McNabb, and Kathryn Blair-Colbert,

We had the opportunity to meet Jeanine from the Manitoba Metis Federation who works tirelessly at Centre du Patrimoine. We receive calls each week from the public asking how to get the required research done for treaty and Metis status. Jeanine shared with me that there is only one genealogist that does their research and the current backlog is over 1 1/2 years! One obstacle on their end has been cemetery records, which we have, and are being constantly updated. She is excited to connect with the cemeteries committee and volunteer with our organization. Jeanine was in awe of the wealth of knowledge our volunteer group shared with her today and spent a couple hours taking it all in.

I’m also pleased to share that this weekend brought in over $1,100 for MGS through memberships, book and art sales, raffle ticket sales, and donations. We had a total of 80 visitors over the two days.  There are still a few tickets available for Thursday evening’s “That’s The Spirit” Wine tasting, book, and art sale at The raffle draw for the Gardener’s Gift Basket and this weekend’s door prize will take place at the end of this fun filled evening.

Everyone we talked to had a very positive experience and many good things to say about the volunteers! At MGS we may have a massive online database of Manitoba names (MANI-Manitoba Name Index), over 10,000 books in our Resource Centre, and subscriptions to online  genealogical services to help you, but it is our people who have knowledge.  They have searched for their ancestors, and know where to look for information.  This is the true benefit of becoming a MGS member—the help you will get from knowledgeable volunteers who have years of research knowledge.

MGS is open Tue to Thu from 10 am to 3 pm, and one Saturday a month by appointment.


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