Maybe you’re feeling a distinct crispness in the air. Or maybe you’re noticing the occasional splashes of yellow, red, or gold among summer’s leaves of green.
Celebrate summer’s last hurrah by visiting some of Northeastern Ontario’s many art galleries and museums! Here are four suggestions that capture the history, the culture, and the spirit of the north.
Note: As you’re travelling throughout the region, please make sure you’re following all COVID-related safety protocols; wash your hands frequently, keep physically distant and wear a mask. Read more here.
Callander Bay Heritage Museum and Alex Dufresne Gallery
Once the home of Dr. Allan Roy Dafoe, physician to the Dionne Quintuplets, the Callander Bay Heritage Museum features memorabilia related to those five famous sisters. Other rooms in the house explore the history of Callander’s shipping and logging industries that were so vital to the region’s development.
Partnered with the Callander Bay Heritage Museum, the Alex Dufresne Gallery features several exhibitions every year that support local and area artists. These exhibitions showcase many different media from traditional oil and watercolour works toexperimental and found-object arrangements. Artisan crafts such as pottery, jewellery, woodwork, and stained glass are also featured.
Callander is located just south of North Bay. For information about museum and gallery hours and admission prices, visit their website.
Discovery North Bay Museum
There’s no better place to explore the city’s past than at the Discovery North Bay Museum, located in the historic Canadian Pacific Railway station. Originally built in 1903, the station was restored in 2004 to accommodate the museum’s regular programming and special exhibitions.
The Train Station at Discovery North Bay is northern Ontario’s model train and slot car superstore with its wide selection of train and slot car race sets and accessories. The museum is also North Bay’s exclusive location for HBC Collection blankets, scarves, toques, mitts, and more.
For hours of operation, visit the Discovery North Bay Museum’s website.
Ojibwe Cultural Foundation
The Ojibwe Cultural Foundation on M’Chigeeng First Nation on Manitoulin Island is home to the Mnidoo Mnising Spirit Gallery. This public art gallery promotes contemporary Anishnaabe art and showcases works by emerging and established Indigenous artists. Leland Bell, Darlene Naponse, Christian Chapman, and Leonard Beam are some of the artists whose work has been exhibited.
Heritage art forms such as quill boxes, ash and sweetgrass baskets, and antler carvings by skilled Anishinabek artists are also on display. Browse the Gift Shop for books, crafts, T-shirts and other treasures to take home.
Admission is by donation, and for information about gallery hours, visit the website.
Noelville’s Backstreet Gallery is an eclectic hub of cultural activity featuring one-of-a-kind works by Anglophone, Francophone, Métis, and Indigenous artists and artisans such as painters and photographers, potters and weavers, woodworkers and quilters. Several of the artists and artisans use found, repurposed, or recycled materials for their amazing creations.
The Backstreet Gallery is open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays until the end of December. Private tours are available.