The Marie Dressler Foundation (MDF) is well on its way to expanding the existing museum in Dressler House to add exhibits about Mary Pickford and Norma Shearer. The Museum has not re-opened due to the fact that its heavy reliance on touch screens means it’s difficult to keep it sanitized against spreading the virus but that does not stop their expansion plans for when the virus crisis has passed or it’s manageable. The five Toronto University Students have completed their design and the Foundation has received a grant of $50,048 from Heritage Canada as well as most of the artifacts promised from the “collectors”. At Monday’s Committee of the Whole meeting, MDF Chair Rick Miller presented a progress report and asked that the Town waive Building permit fees estimated at $2,100.
Of the project’s budget of $284K, $220K has already been raised leaving a balance of $64K. Rick told Council that “the tourism draw of this Museum, the only one of its kind in Canada, will be compelling”. The House is owned by the Town but leased to MDF on a long term lease and is one of a few museums in Cobourg as listed here. (Currently, only the Sifton-Cook Museum is open).
In response to Rick’s request, Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin suggested that Rick pay the permit out of current funds and then he should put in a request for the amount as a Community Grant in the 2021 budget. She noted that MDF already has a grant for $4000 paid from the 2020 budget.
Work is expected to start in the Fall of 2020 – opening will depend on the Virus situation.
- Progress on New Museum for Dressler House – 13 January 2020
- MDF Presentation to Council
- Presentation from MDF in January that includes details of new Museum