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The museum’s outdoor terrace, a gathering space that connects interior and exterior, to be named in recognition of the gift

The Canadian Canoe Museum is pleased to announce that George and Kathy Dembroski have made a $500,000 commitment to its capital campaign, supporting the construction of its new 85,000 square-foot facility at the water’s edge.

The Dembroskis are friends of the museum, who have a connection to the area through their cottage on Stony Lake. These Toronto-based philanthropists are strongly supportive of the plans for the new museum and are eager to see it built alongside the Peterborough Lift Lock on the Trent-Severn Waterway. The museum’s 9,700 square-foot outdoor terrace, which runs along the east side of building, will be named in recognition of their generous gift.

“We are incredibly pleased to support this exciting project in Peterborough, recognizing its local, provincial and national impact. As we learned about the plans for the new museum, we became increasingly interested. And we knew we wanted to become involved as soon as we learned about the functionality of the terrace – and how it will serve as a connecting space between the indoors and the outdoors. We can envision people gathering there and taking in the views of the lift lock and the waterway.”
Kathy Dembroski

The new museum has been designed by the award-winning team of heneghan peng (Dublin, Ireland) and Kearns Mancini Architects (Toronto, Canada). The building, purpose-built for the world’s largest collection of canoes, kayaks and paddled watercraft, will blend almost seamlessly into its landscape, emerging from the drumlin and complementing and contouring the waterway.

The terrace, which is parallel to the galleria space on the interior, matching the curved shape of the building, extends the ground floor from the interior. Only a glass wall separates the two areas. This will draw outside visitors into the museum, and also invite visitors who are inside, to explore the spaces beyond.

“All of the new museum’s outdoor spaces will significantly enhance the visitor experience,” says Carolyn Hyslop, Executive Director. “We look very forward to welcoming individuals and families to the terrace to connect with each another and the landscape that surrounds them. The terrace provides us with a flexible, functional gathering space that will offer opportunities that right now, we can only imagine. This is thanks to the incredible generosity of George and Kathy.”

The new museum will be supported by a $65 million capital campaign, and has received foundational financial support from municipal, provincial and federal governments. The W. Garfield Weston Foundation has invested $7.5 million, building on its more than 20-year-long legacy of leadership with the museum.