The Kelowna Museums Society’s Vision is “To be the Okanagan’s leader in making the connections between people and place”. To do this, we collect, research, and interpret artefacts of natural and social interest.
The Society collects artefacts on behalf of the Okanagan Heritage Museum, the BC Orchard Industry Museum, the BC Wine Museum, the Okanagan Military Museum and the Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame and Museum. All artefacts are acquired in a manner that is respectful of the public trust and that does not damage cultural resources. We strive to be Ethical, Inclusive, Authentic, Responsive and Inspiring, as these are the values we follow.
The Society has a large and varied artefact Collection which represents all aspects of life in Kelowna and the Okanagan. The main storage facility is located at the Okanagan Heritage Museum where high-density mobile shelving units provide a safe environment for the Collection and allow for easier access to artefacts by Museum staff.
The Collections Department has 2 part-time staff who are responsible for taking in all artefact donations and for cataloguing and securing all objects. The Registrar is responsible for the overall Collection and the Collections Clerk works predominantly with objects associated with the Military.
The storage area in the Okanagan Heritage Museum houses all of the natural history specimens, ethnographic materials, and clothing, costume, and textile collections. Also located at this facility are numerous objects which reflect the social history of the community.
The Society has two other storage facilities. The Laurel Packinghouse provides storage for the orchard and wine industry collections, houses all of the larger artefacts and those that are made from materials which are not affected by changes in the environment. All artefacts relating to the Okanagan’s military history are located in our storage facility at the Okanagan Military Museum.
We collect artefacts through donations from the community or bequests. Some items are purchased and others are acquired through exchange or transfer. Prior to any items being incorporated into the Collection, they are evaluated by the Collections Committee. Once the Committee has determined that the artefacts conform to the criteria set out in the Collections and Collections Management Policy, the Registrar assigns each item an accession number and enters the artefact information into the Collections Database. The artefacts are then placed in storage until they are ready to be used for exhibition or research purposes.