Ideas for fun May long weekend events, sites, museums in Alberta

Everyone can enjoy affordable adventures over the May long weekend and all summer at Alberta’s heritage facilities.

Fort George and Buckingham House sm

1796 fur trade history at Fort George and Buckingham House, one of many Alberta history experiences at heritage facilities across the province.

The summer season begins May 15 as provincial historic sites, museums and archives open the doors or start summer hours. From antique vehicles, Ukrainian dancing and vintage food, to dinosaurs and ancient bison-hunting culture, there is something for people of all ages.

“We are opening our doors and calling all Albertans to discover our beautiful province through our historic sites, museums and archives. I know you will be inspired and moved by the stories and people that have shaped Alberta,” said Leela Aheer, Minister of Culture, Multiculturalism and Status of Women in a press release.

New and favourite experiences

There are many different things to do at Alberta’s 20 provincially owned and operated historic sites, museums and Provincial Archives.

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From special events and one-time exhibits to new programs and old favourites, here is a sample of what is happening:

  • The Vikings are here at the new Royal Alberta MuseumCheck out the museum’s first international travelling exhibition, Vikings: Beyond the Legend, and then relax at the outdoor café, now open with the museum’s summer hours.
  • Vintage food at the Provincial Archives of Alberta food and Community, the newest gallery exhibit, features historic images of how food brings people together. It opens May 22.
  • Tea time at Victoria Settlement. On May 19, celebrate Queen Victoria’s 200th birthday over tea and cake and continue the tradition with Tea and Tales Tuesdays in July and August.
  • Hike an ancient trail at Head-Smashed-In Buffalo JumpStarting May 18, and every other Saturday throughout the summer, travel the ancient drive lanes and hear the stories of how the plains people hunted the mighty buffalo from Blackfoot guides.
  • Full week of fun at the Oil Sands Discovery CentreStill looking for summer activities for your children? Summer science camps are now weeklong.
  • Spotlight on the past at Historic DunveganBehind the Scenes exhibit includes an archeological dig experience. On May 18, you can join interpreters for a humorous and interactive outdoor show.
  • Feats with feet at the Ukrainian Cultural Heritage VillageStep into an authentic early 1900s pioneer experience when the village opens its doors on May 18 and enjoy Ukrainian dancing at the Celebration of Spring on May 20.
  • Fast and furious at the Reynolds-Alberta MuseumSports car enthusiasts will want to see the two new exhibits: Our Checkered Past: Racing in Alberta and Honda Motorcycles of the ’70s & ’80s.

Plan your summer in Alberta

Explore and discover our common heritage with the Experience Alberta’s History annual pass. Pay one fee and enjoy access to all the provincial historic sites and museums, and stay at a nearby Alberta Parks’ campground for an authentic Alberta experience.

Share your moments during #MuseumWeek

May 13-19 is #MuseumWeek, a worldwide celebration of culture on social networks, and International Museum Day is on May 18. Share your favourite moments at Alberta’s historic sites, museums and archives throughout the week using #ABhistory.

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