Woolly the Mammoth in the Royal BC Museum’s Natural History Gallery, quietly celebrated his 40th birthday at the museum recently. Courtesy Royal BC Museum

Take your pick of artsy activites this Family Day weekend

From museums and galleries to historic aircraft, there’s many options for families to choose from

Looking for a great way to spend quality time with loved ones this Family Day and share some cool experiences, like visiting the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibit?

Thanks to support from the Province of British Columbia, the Royal BC Museum is offering free admission on Feb. 17, giving visitors a perfect chance to take in all the museum has to offer.

On the second floor, you’ve got a decision to make. Do you go left and explore the best in wildlife photography from around the world (open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.), or go right and visit the museum’s Natural History Gallery, home to Woolly the Mammoth, who recently celebrated his 40th birthday at the RBCM.

From 1-3 p.m., bring the gang to the family photo station in the gallery. Have a photo taken and printed of your crew next to a mystery animal specimen from the Natural History collection. Or take a selfie in front of the classic dioramas.

On the third floor, head to the First Peoples Gallery and deepen your understanding of the cultural traditions of B.C.’s Indigenous peoples. Or stroll through the Becoming B.C. Gallery and reacquaint yourself with the displays you loved as a child, from Old Town to the mining, forestry and fishing exhibits and Capt. George Vancouver’s ship.

For more information, visit royalbcmuseum.bc.ca or call 250-356-7226.

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Out at the BC Aviation Museum in North Saanich, they’ved moved the 2020 Kids Fest to Sunday, Feb. 16 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. to coincide with the holiday weekend. Museum president David Jackson says they’ve got a fun day planned, full of aviation-themed activities for kids of all ages.

Visitors will find crafts, games, prizes, face painting, hands-on experiences, snacks, exhibits of vintage aircraft, and other activities. Admission is by donation. The museum is located at 1910 Norseman Rd. near Victoria International Airport.

Find more information online at bcam.net or by calling 250-655-3300.

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In downtown Victoria, the Maritime Museum of BC is hosting free Family Day weekend activities, including the Museum Tots program and their popular Sea Glass Jewelry Workshop. Drop by on Saturday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. to see what’s new at the museum.

The museum is located at 634 Humboldt St. and is open Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday 10 to 5. Find other information online about what’s happening at mmbc.bc.ca or email info@mmbc.bc.ca.

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Enjoy an afternoon of free art-making for the whole family at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria Family Sunday, happening from 2 to 4 p.m. on Feb. 16. The exhibition, To Talk with Others features special guest Monique Salez, a first-generation Canadian of mixed-descent, displaced peoples. A mother, storyteller, director, choreographer and teacher of movement for over 25 years, her connections to this exhibition come in two ways. Her sister, Valerie, is one of the project co-ordinators, and Monique’s recent work includes creative collaborations with inspiring Indigenous artists across the traditional Lekwungen lands in Victoria.

From 2 to 3 p.m., guests can get messy with Throw, Slip, Spin: Studio Ceramics from the AGGV Collection. An on-site facilitator will encourage visitors to connect with art, ideas and other people in a relaxed and informal setting. The gallery is at 1040 Moss St., learn more at aggv.ca or call 250-384-4171.

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Looking to make a road trip?

The Salt Spring Arts Council celebrates kids and families through the arts, performance and fun with their annual Family Day Celebration at Mahon Hall, 114 Rainbow Rd. on Salt Spring Island. There’s crafts, snacks and face painting and an interactive performance of Raven, performed by Indigenous presenter Dallas Yellowfly.

The activities run from 1 to 3:30 p.m. For more information on this or other activities, visit ssartscouncil.com or email info@ssartscouncil.com.

Family activitiesmuseums-and-galleriesRoyal BC Museum

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