There's a sense of anticipation on the horizon for the Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre (CFDC) heading into a new year. With 2022 visitor numbers higher than pre-pandemic attendance, without dig tours running last year, Executive Director Adolfo Cuetara anticipates a good year in 2023.
Dig Tours will be back in a big way.
"We own 120 acres of property in this escarpment, and we built our thousand square foot Field Station there, totally equipped with a lunchroom, a kitchen, and space for a brand-new excavator. It's a building that is sustainable energetically with solar panels and a wind turbine."
With construction predicted to be finished in Spring, dig tours, coupled with new amenities, are expected to improve the visitor experience.
Cuetara describes how.
"This year, we will start a new revamped Dig Tour program so people will be able to spend the day becoming a Paleontologist for a day. With this station as headquarters, people will be able to have lunch with washrooms, and all kinds of services, and a few active dig sites. Also, we are hiring a Paleontologist in Spring just to lead the team to work with these dig tours."
The centre will soon be taking summer Dig Tour bookings.
Cuetara explained how this $363, 000 facility became a reality.
"Most of the funding for the Field Station is coming from PrairieCan, (the former Western Economic Development in Canada), so it's a federal program. And also, we received help from the Province from Travel Manitoba, the Manitoba 150 Program and also a few private grants from the Coop Grocery store here in Morden. Altogether, we are organizing an official unveiling hopefully in July."
For more information check out the CFDC website.