Why an Interview,,,

Over the years we have been able to meet and talk with some very interesting people. They have shared with us their knowledge and have provided us with a great deal of insight as to how and why festivals and events work and why they are so important to our communities and to the Province of Ontario. With this in mind, we decided that we wanted you to meet and hear from some of the wonderful people who work so hard to provide us all with such wonderful Ontario Festivals and Events! We are pleased and proud to present "THE INSIDE SCOOP"!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Interview with Laurie Siblock (Part One)

Laurie Siblock
Special Events & Community Liason
Lang Pioneer Village Museum

Lang Pioneer Village Museum was established by the County of Peterborough in 1967 to celebrate and preserve the rural history of the area. Each year, thousands of visitors from around the world take a trip back in time to discover how the pioneers lived.
Nestled along the banks of the historic Indian River, Lang Pioneer Village Museum features over twenty-five restored and furnished buildings constructed between 1825 and 1899. Many of the buildings were donated by townships within the County of Peterborough and were moved to their present site when the Museum was founded.

A photographer's paradise, the Village is complete with lanes and pathways, farm animals, rail and stump fences, vegetable and herb gardens, as well as other authentic details of a 19th century hamlet. Villagers of all ages, dressed in authentic historical costume, go about their daily chores contributing to the authenticity of this living history experience.

The vibrancy that visitors find at Lang Pioneer Village Museum is made possible through the efforts of over 170 volunteers who contribute their skills, time, energy and passion to bringing the Village to life and to preserving the buildings, artifacts and knowledge for future generations.

This is the world that this weeks interviewee, Laurie Siblock, lives and works in!

Laurie Siblock has been with Lang Pioneer Village since August of 2006. She has many responsibilities and varied duties. She tells me “there is never a dull day working at Lang Pioneer Village Museum!” Laurie plans the Special Events for the season, manages the Volunteer Program and develops community partnerships. The Village is closed to the public from January to April and that time is a crucial planning and development time for her! This is when all the bookings of performers, demonstrators and crafts people for all the season are completed. Needless to say, Laurie is extremely busy during this time! I asked Laurie how they kept things fresh and new for visitors who frequented the Village! Laurie tells me that it’s really important to find new and interesting things (that are still in keeping with the representation of 19th-century living)! She says… “We have a terrific team of 170 dedicated volunteers, but as we grow, it is a challenge to find enough volunteers to meet the needs and demands of the Village. Also, there are fewer and fewer people out there who have the traditional skills that are needed for demonstrations such as tinsmithing, blacksmithing, butter making, spinning, weaving, broom making, etc,. It is important to keep these skills alive so training the volunteers becomes more and more important. Finally, in order to engage the community and provide diversity in programming, it is important to develop partnerships with community groups and organizations. The Manager, Joe Corrigan, and I do presentations to community groups, meet with other museums and organizations to partner and reach out to Guilds, trades groups, and specialist organizations to stay connected with the community. I am also one of the Professional Development Directors for the Peterborough Chapter of the Association of Managers of Volunteer Services. In that role, I create learning opportunities for and network with other Volunteer Managers in the area”.
(To be continued)

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