Opening his pocket book is the only way Bob McMinn sees the Highlands Museum project budging.
Everyday he hammers away at Caleb Pike Heritage Park working along side Doug Landles. McMinn hired Landles to help with construction of the site.
“We could always have more volunteers,” McMinn said.
McMinn is currently financing the $60,000 to $70,000 project. A provincial grant was expected to cover about $30,000 for the project. It came from a portion of a large grant to cover the proposed community hall and museum. It is uncertain if it will come through. The $400,000 Towns for Tomorrow grant was awarded in 2008, but will only be cashed if both projects are completed by March 31, 2012.
Highlands council requested an extension from the Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. It has not been granted at this time.
McMinn is working hard to get the museum finished by the deadline hoping to be reimbursed for some of his contributions. But he’s prepared to foot the entire bill if that doesn’t pan out.
“There is nothing I can do about it,” McMinn shrugged.
Either way, McMinn is glad to help the community build the museum, plus carpentry has always been a hobby of his.
“I have just loved it since I was a kid,” he said with a big smile.
The museum is being built with double walls to contain one foot of insulation to lower heating costs. It will also be wheelchair accessible.
Much of the wood for the project was harvested and milled on McMinn’s land.
Once complete the museum will display historical photos and other items including Highlands pioneer Harold Pike’s First World War medals.
To volunteer or to contribute in the Highlands Museum project call McMinn at 250-478-4403.