Caring for community history

Although no one from the Municipality of Killarney responded, I did receive the following from Adele Loosemore, a driver of the excellent heritage site. With her permission, it follows:
Hello Simon;
I don’t know if anyone at the Municipality’s website has responded to your message yet, but I thought I should let you know that our Heritage Society is hoping to expand the Museum and propose that the jail house become part of it in some way, so that it could be open for viewing during the same time the Museum is open. At that time, we can then advertise it as another attraction.
I used to run a little shop out of the jail house, but found I couldn’t attract enough customers even with signage in front and down on the main street, where most of the tourists are. You would probably be surprised how many tourists never leave Channel Street. It has always been a problem trying to get tourists to walk up even just another block away from the waterfront.
I also thought about the suggestions you make in your message (re “Property of Killarney Jail” etc…) and period costumes etc…but I must tell you that people seldom wish to pay for anything relating to the Museum. We used to charge a 50-cent admission fee and people actually turned away at the door rather than pay and come inside. Now we just ask for donations.
Since its creation, the Provincial Park has operated largely in isolation from Killarney village, but this year two people from the Park staff met with our Society and we are going to develop some projects together and they have offered to help promote our Museum. I think that is a very positive step for us.
The Society has recently printed a Walking Tour Booklet providing information about many historic sites in the village, including the east lighthouse, but it came out late this summer — next year, we will be promoting it heavily and letting people know more about our attractions. We are a little more careful about promoting the lighthouse because it is located on government property and they have already expressed some concern about the number of people who go there. We don’t want them to decide to block access completely.
Our Heritage Society has very few members and little money to work with. We are moving ahead slowly, but we are moving, and we thank you for taking the time to let us know your thoughts. I hope you come to Killarney again and I hope when you do that you find we are doing a more effective job at promoting our community.
Best wishes and Miigwetch
Adele Loosemore
81 Ontario St. W
Killarney Ontario
P0M 2A0


About mielniczuk

Community, systems, design, collaboration, change, evidence, Intelligent Accountability(c)
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