New $65 million home planned for canoe museum

Home to the world’s largest collection of canoes, the Canadian Canoe Museum in Peterborough will have a new $65 million home, with construction beginning early next year.

The project got a boost with an announcement in May that the W. Garfield Weston Foundation is donating $7.5 million toward the new facility at the water’s edge of the Trent Canal below the Peterborough Lift Lock. For 20 years the former Outboard Marine buildings in Peterborough have been home to the museum’s impressive collection that includes canoes donated by singer Gordon Lightfoot, author Farley Mowat’s “boat that wouldn’t float” from his youth and former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau’s iconic buckskin jacket.

Chief Williams of Curve Lake First Nation spoke passionately during the event about how the canoe connects us to the water.

“I encourage you to make sure that yourselves and those that are using the waters are using it with much respect. Without water we wouldn’t be here today. It’s important that we recognize that. The very point of canoes, and this building, is needing that water – it was our first highway.”