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Feb 11, 2005

Museum celebrating 3rd anniversary

Story PictureThree years after it opened its doors, the Museum of Belize is this week quietly celebrating its third anniversary with a “people’s display.” The exhibition includes various pieces of artefacts and historical pieces that give visitors an insight into the country’s rich heritage. News 5 was at the former prison turned museum this morning.

Patrick Jones, Reporting
Director of the Museum of Belize Paul Francisco says the idea is to get more people involved in these so-called interactive spaces of learning and information.

Paul Francisco, Director, Museum of Belize
?We do have some photographs of Belize in the 1940?s and 1930?s. We also have some heirlooms that are very dear to people. There is interest also of the first gold medal that Belize won and that was from the softball sporting discipline. We have a radio, we have implements that were used in the logging industry. Something that was very important to the economy of Belize.?

Francisco says that a significant amount of the pieces on display are on loan to the Museum, which has, in three short years, become an attraction both for Belizeans and those who visit the country.

Paul Francisco
?It has been very well. I was able to make a report of the visits of last year. And it is very encouraging. We had about 17,000 or so visitors including students, including, non-residents, people from the cruise and many walk-ins. We have students from primary schools, the secondary school, and the tertiary level. So it has been great. So what we are trying to do basically with this peoples? display is to introduce or to take this museum into the fourth anniversary with greater participation from the Belizean public.?

Minister of Culture Francis Fonseca, congratulated the staff of the museum for all the work that went into transforming the old prison into an international class facility.

Francis Fonseca, Minister of Culture
?The Museum of Belize over these first three years of its life has been such a place of information and learning. It has been a classroom for our people, our students and those visiting our shores who seek a deeper insight into our way of life. It has helped us all to better understand the past, appreciate the relevance of the present and reflect on the future. But the Museum of Belize is only now at three, beginning to take its first steps. Only now beginning to chart it?s own course. There is much work the done.?

And that?s just what Francisco and his staff says they are committed to, making the facility more attractive and exciting so that more people become involved in preserving our heritage for future generations to appreciate and enjoy.

Paul Francisco
?It is one way of trying to get the Belizean public involved in the affairs of the Museum of Belize.?

Patrick Jones
?And what is that involvement, how does it come about??

Paul Francisco
?It came about because for one, we are mindful that there are many people out there with the same objective of the Museum of Belize, even though they do it individually or as a family. And that objective is to keep for posterity elements of the heritage of Belize. So us having the same objective, we are just tying to foster a partnership for the good of Belize and Belizeans.?

Patrick Jones, for News 5.

The people’s display will be at the Museum of Belize for the next thirty days after which the exhibition will go on the road to the different Houses of Culture around the country.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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