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In addition to the Museumís Permanent Exhibits, we host three to four special exhibitions the year in our Feature Exhibit Gallery. Highlighting an array of travelling exhibits and local displays, the Feature Exhibit Gallery has showcased everything from fashion to sports. Local & Canadian history, numerous private collections and unique artistic collaborations have all been part of what we strive to bring to our community. Designed to inspire and invoke wonder, these dynamic exhibits are visual (and often interactive) delights for visitors.

To view past Feature Exhibits presented by the Nanaimo Museum Click HERE. Also be sure not to miss the Sports Hall of Fame or Community Hallway Display on your next Museum visit.

Directions to the Nanaimo Museum

Current Exhibit:


Characters, Con Men & Celebrities
February 1 - May 7

Explore the lives of intriguing people from Nanaimoís past.  This unusual exhibit includes both the famous and virtually unknown.  Petty thieves, a suspected German spy, murderers, crooked cops and politicians rub shoulders with a nationally renowned poet , a war hero, the worldís fastest man and women who overcame race and gender discrimination.  You be the judge of who is a character, con man or celebrity!

Click HERE to vote!

The Nanaimo Museum is hosting a presentation Tuesday, February 16, 1:30-2:15 on our Characters, Con Men & Celebrities feature exhibit. Visitors will join exhibit curator, Aimee Greenaway, to hear selected stories from the exhibit including details and characters that were edited out. Pre-registration is required and the cost is $5 per person.


Upcoming Exhibits 2016:

The Story Behind the Artifact
May 20 - September 5

The best artifacts have an incredible story to tell.  This exhibit features a selection of artifacts from the Nanaimo Museumís collection that have the most remarkable stories.  Artifacts connected to local people, places and events range from ordinary household objects to those that have survived fatal accidents.  Their stories evoke laughter, sadness, pride and a new appreciation for the powerful way an artifact can connect us with the past.


Voices from the Engraver
September 12 - November 21

Experience the creative process, technical skill and artistry behind Canadian stamps and bank notes.  The exhibit features engraving tools, printing plates, photos and drawings and designs that were not used.  This is a travelling exhibit from the Bank of Canada Museum in partnership with the Canadian Museum of History.


Capturing Christmas
December 1 - January 6

Moments in time from winter and Christmas in Nanaimo have been captured by cameras for 150 years.  The museumís collection of cameras and historical photographs will highlight Christmas' past in the Harbour City.  Get into the Christmas spirit while catching a glimpse of how our community has changed over the years.

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