Monday, June 30, 2014

What's New at the CFDC?

Even if you have visited before, it's always worth checking out what's new at the Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre. We've recently added a new exhibit to our collection, showcasing some of our more recent finds that have been kicking around in our collection room! In this display you can catch a glimpse of some Mosasaur vertebrae and ribs. There's also a chance to get a close look at some leg bones of a bird called Hesperornis, a flightless bird that swam with the marine reptiles in the Cretaceous era. There's also some Xiphactinus and Enchodus teeth, two fish that swam in the Western Interior Seaway. And last but definitely not least, there is a chunk of a squid pen, the only part of the squid to fossilize.

Aaron Kilmury, one of our field techs, has been hard at work on an extinction display that is sure to knock your socks off! This display has been revamped from an older display that had since been retired. Aaron has breathed new life into it, and we're hoping it will be on display for the public in July!

Here at the museum, we often get asked if we are still finding fossils in this area, and the answer is a strong yes! Field techs and volunteers alike have been hard at work on uncovering more mosasaur! This has been a great site for the CFDC, as it was found at the same site as our Xiphactinus from 2010. It always amazes me what can be found here in the Pembina Valley, right under our feet!

As usual, among the larger finds we still find several small fossils and micro-fossils at our dig sites. Typically we find remainders of fish vertebrae, or shell imprints left in the shale. This year, our goals are to find more shark teeth, and to find a more complete Hesperornis fossil! Fingers crossed that this is the year!

We've also got some big events coming up so get your calenders ready!

Kicking off the summer, you can find the CFDC crew at the Morden Beach Blast on July 1st! There'll be some information regarding Dino Day Camp there, as well as some face painting for the kids! Hope to see you there!

Next up is Bruce the Mosasaur's birthday party on July 26! Bruce is turning the ripe old age of 80 000 040 years old and to celebrate, the CFDC is throwing him a celebration. With regular admission to the museum, (Click here to view admissions) guests will have a chance to enjoy some birthday cake, as well as take advantage of the many activities staff will be running during the day.

Later in August is the CFDC's second annual Shark Week! Stop in to the museum to learn more about the ancient creatures that swam in Cretaceous Manitoba, and enjoy some of the activities that will be offered as well. If you have some kids who just can't get enough of sharks, sign them up for our Dino Day Camp version of Shark Week! Kids will have a chance to learn about sharks and have fun at the same time! Spots are limited so book early!

Hoping to see you soon!

Paige Ready
Museum Assistant

Friday, June 27, 2014

A Welcome To Summer Staff!

There are some new and familiar faces among the summer staff this season!

Returning to work as our field technicians are Eric Blaich and Aaron Kilmury. Each with a year of Field Tech experience under their belts, they have been a massive help in training new staff and volunteers and giving insight into new displays and exhibits.

New to the field tech team are Candace Le Sage and myself, Paige Ready. Candace is in her third year of studies in Geology and Anthropology at University of Manitoba. She feels that working at the museum is right up her alley, and will help her in her future career of archaeology.

I (Paige Ready) have just wrapped up my first year of Concurrent Education at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Although this job is a little outside my field of expertise, I've thoroughly enjoyed it so far, and I look forward to the next couple months.

Though he may be a familiar face, Matt Duda is new to the position of Museum Curator. Having worked at the CFDC as a field tech for 5 years, he was the best candidate for the position. Although its had its challenges, he feels that he has never been happier in a job.

We also have 2 Youth Program Coordinators joining us for the summer, one returning and one new face! Rebecca Pedneault is enjoying her second year with the CFDC, and is currently entering her 4th year of Bachelor of Science with a focus on botany at the University of Winnipeg. She's looking forward to the summer, and can't wait to work with the kids!

Maddy Jamieson is new to the position of Youth Coordinator, but feels right at home with it! She is heading back to Lakehead University for her second year, and feels that the summer job with the museum will help her with her future career as an elementary school teacher.

We also have several volunteers joining us, some returning and some who are new this season. These volunteers really are jacks of all trades and help the museum staff with everything. From cleaning displays, to actually going out into the field, they really can (and will) do it all!

All of these different faces can give you plenty of information and service at the CFDC, so feel free to stop by anytime this summer (between 10 and 5 of course)! And if you or your family is interested in volunteering, feel free to click this link for more information!

Hoping to see you soon!
Paige Ready
Museum Assistant

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

We're Back Baby!

After almost a year, the Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre Blog is back! There has been lots happening at the CFDC, with lots of new exhibits, faces and activities to look forward to!

May and June have been busy months for our field technicians, with running school tours almost every day! For the returning staff, it was great to get back into the routine at the museum. For the staff that was new to the CFDC this summer, it was a challenge to learn all about the exhibits in the museum, and it has been a pleasure to share that information with others!

Many groups have had the opportunity to actually get out into the field and actually do a little hands on work. Several students were able to find some fossils, micro-fossils, and of course Pembina Diamonds. Fun was had by all on those days!

Unfortunately there was a fair amount of rainy days during June, so some weeks we were not able to go into the field at all. Luckily, CFDC staff were prepared for those days and groups were able to enjoy a variety of indoor activities.

May and June were also the beginning of festival season, and the CFDC was able to take full advantage of it. So far, we have attended Kid's Fest in Winnipeg, and the Morden Block Party, Back 40 Festival, Teddy Bear Picnic and Angel Hair right here in Morden. Going to these festivals gives us a chance to connect with our community, as well as get our information out to those who have never visited before! We've enjoyed festival season so far, and we're looking forward to attending some more before summer's end.

Manning the booth at Kid's Fest was a blast! 

Looking for something to keep your kids busy now that school's out? Send them to Dino Day Camp! Our Youth Program Coordinators have been hard at work planning fun and educational activities to keep kids entertained all summer long. Catch up with us at the Morden Beach Blast on July 1 for some entertainment and information.

As for myself, I look forward to sharing this Blog, and all of our new and exciting discoveries with you this summer! Feel free to stop in any time this summer and #DiscoverFossils!

Paige Ready
Museum Assistant