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  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

Bicentennial Museum celebrates Queen’s Platinum Jubilee

by Garrett Fodor

In celebrating Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee, the Maidstone Bicentennial Museum brought a taste of England across the pond in honour of Her Majesty. 

  On Saturday, in recognition of the 70-years Queen Elizabeth II has overseen the United Kingdom and the Commonweath, the Maidstone Bicentennial Museum transformed its grounds for a day fit for royalty.

  Beginning with a tree commemoration, the day shifted to an “Old Fashioned English Country Fair,” which featured live entertainment, including a magician, puppet shows, and a bagpipe performance.

  “She is an important part of our culture and our heritage as a country, and a lot of people may not realize that,” Victoria Beaulieu, Curator of the Maidstone Bicentennial Museum, said of the Queen. “It’s an accomplishment for her to serve as long as she has. I mean, this is where all the foundation of our country and Parliament came from.”

  Attendees were invited to enjoy tea and snacks, try their hand at croquet, and play a game of coconut toss. Children were also able to decorate their own crowns and have their faces painted, all while learning more about Her Majesty and the impact she has had in her reign. 

  In honour of the Platinum Jubilee, Beaulieu noted there was an exhibit on display, featuring various items commemorating various times of Her Majesty’s 70-years of service. 

  “We put out a call to action and we are just extremely proud of the community support we received from members of the community, corporate sponsors, and the Canadian government,” Beaulieu said. “We were able to assemble such a great display of memorabilia that we could not have imagined. Some of it will remain on display, while some is temporary, but it will be up until about September for people to checkout and learn more about.”

  Beaulieu added she is really pleased to see how the community came out and showed their general interest in Queen Elizabeth II and the impact she has had on Canada.

  The event served as one of the first events the Maidstone Bicentennial Museum has had in over two-years, following the COVID-19 pandemic. Beaulieu noted that for many visitors on Saturday, it was the first time they were able to see the recent expansion to the Museum that was made possible through a 2019 Ontario Trillium Foundation capital expenditure grant.

  She is excited to be back and open once again for another season, adding the Bicentennial Museum will host a Bee Day on June 18, to educate on the importance of the pollinators and the role they play.

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