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This article was published 5/3/2015 (751 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Artifacts from the time of King Tutankhamun, the wreckage of the Titanic and Body Worlds are just some of the exhibits the Manitoba Museum has had to take a pass on.
The reason? Not enough exhibit space.
That will be changing soon now the museum will receive $5.3 million for an expansion of its Alloway Hall exhibit area.
Winnipegger Jason Hiebert said he looks forward to the museum expanding so more temporary exhibits can come here.
Hiebert, while touring the Real Pirates temporary exhibit on Wednesday with his wife, Kelsey, five-year-old son, Kade and four-year-old daughter, Emily-Ashton, said his family would especially look forward to seeing another large dinosaur exhibit.
"We'd come back to see new exhibits," he said. "We keep an eye out for what's here, and when they come, we bring the kids."
Kelsey said she has been coming to the museum since she was a child so it's good to see something new there.
"We come back for the special exhibits more than anything else now," she said.
Claudette Leclerc, the museum's executive director, said the expansion, expected to be done by 2017, will almost double its 5,000-square-foot exhibit space to more than 9,700 square feet.
"We are so incredibly excited," Leclerc said after the official announcement. "This will allow the museum to bring in the biggest and best exhibits in the world."
Leclerc said Real Pirates is an example of the problem faced by the museum. It's the first time this exhibit has been to a Canadian museum.
"One-third of this exhibit is not on display here because there wasn't enough room," she said. "We still chose the best, but the interactive exhibits are not here. That will be different with this expansion."
The provincial government is providing the biggest slice of the funding -- $3.8 million -- with another $1 million coming over three years from the federal government's Canada Cultural Spaces Fund and $500,000 from the Winnipeg Foundation.
The expansion will see the southwest corner of the museum ripped open with the addition taking over a little-used patio.
Leclerc said being able to bring in temporary exhibitions already helps attract patrons who might not otherwise come to the museum -- and they come back to visit the rest of the museum.
Leclerc said the museum won't begin searching for a large exhibit to come in for the opening until it has a firm completion date. She said tenders will go out this week.
"We'd love to open with a big dinosaur exhibit, but there are others out there, too," she said.
Leclerc wouldn't release details, but she said the expansion is the first stage of what is expected to be a $160-million capital renewal plan in the next few years.
Earlier, federal MP Shelley Glover, the minister of Canadian heritage and official languages, said she's pleased to be able to help expand a museum she has visited since she was a child and now will share with her granddaughter.
"It's important we support our museums because they really let the public see what we are, where we were from and where we are going," she said.