By Carla Allen
A group of community museums in southwest Nova Scotia can now lay claim to
Canada‚Äôs largest collection of museum virtual tours.
The Southwest Curators group ‚Äď comprised of 30 museums from Bridgewater along the south shore to Yarmouth, and northeast to the Annapolis Valley ‚Äď is supporting the interactive virtual tours for its respective museums.
The website (www.novascotiamuseums.com) was launched at the Yarmouth County Museum and Archives by developer Josh Hansen, owner of Via Web Media Ltd., on July 21.
Viewers can see inside 30 museums of southwestern Nova Scotia by manipulating the camera to reveal 360-degree views of each facility. It‚Äôs one-stop-shopping before one makes an in-person visit, but it also allows school groups, seniors and shut-ins to virtually experience the various properties.
Hansen created a virtual tour for the Yarmouth County Museum close to a year ago. Director Bruce Bishop says they have received great comments on the feature, with close to 1,000 hits from 24 countries in that time.
Funding was applied to expand the project, with 27 museums contributing $100 each, and in-kind services, towards the initiative.
Hansen says the site gives museums a chance to promote themselves and their product interactively for a relatively small investment.
‚ÄúOnline marketing is crucial for future years,‚ÄĚ he said.
This gives each museum the chance to promote themselves.‚ÄĚ
The $22,000 project was funded by the Strategic Development Initiative of the Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage (Heritage Division).