Archive for August, 2012

While the heat and sunshine reminds us that we have a little time left to enjoy the summer before heading back to school in September, education is on our minds year-round here at the Diefenbunker. One of our most recent educational projects is really starting to get up off the ground, and we couldn’t be more excited! Our team is busy working on developing educational resources that teachers across the country will be able to use to bring the history and themes of the Cold War into their classrooms in the year 2014 and beyond. 2014 marks the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, an event that saw East and West Berlin reunited and the effective end of the Soviet Union and the Cold War. What better time to get students engaged and to raise awareness of this monumental time in modern world history?

RBC, CMA & Diefenbunker Staff pose for a photo

RBC, CMA & Diefenbunker Staff

Cold War Teacher Resources Across Canada

We’re going to offer educators nation-wide a variety of packages to suit their subject, grade level, and personal teaching style. These will include all the tools necessary to help students gain a critical understanding of the Cold War and its themes.  Using philosophies of museum education, the materials in the packages will appeal to a broad range of students with various learning styles and encourage hands-on and inquiry learning. The packages include a series of lesson plans, PowerPoint Presentations, activity sheets, project proposals, artifacts and both primary and secondary research resources.  Our two largest packages so far, ‘Community and the Cold War’ and ‘Media Literacy and Pop Culture’ include overarching themes and projects that can be completed collaboratively with the Diefenbunker, the community, as well as other schools and classrooms on a national, and even international level! They deal with subject matter from the Berlin Wall and Cold War communities, to propaganda and comic books, to pop art, popular music, and protest art! Needless to say, we are really looking forward to bringing this amazing learning experience to students and teachers across Canada!

RBC Foundation’s Emerging Artists Internship

This project was made possible by the Diefenbunker’s receipt of the RBC Foundation’s Emerging Artists Internship, awarded in conjunction with the Canadian Museums Association to two heritage organizations in the city of the CMA national conference each year. We were fortunate to receive the grant to hire Emily Walsh, our Interpretive Planning Assistant, this spring. She has been hard at work since then, and last week we invited members of the RBC Foundation and the CMA for a presentation from Emily about the project. The visit included a tour of the bunker by Emily and some delicious Suzy Q doughnuts.


On The Beach

Ever wanted to go to Australia? Well, the survivors in this movie sure are happy to be there!

In this 1959 Stanley Kramer film, although doom seems  inevitable, a positive light is shed on the tenacity of human nature as friendships develop between nuclear holocaust survivors who are sure to meet their end soon enough.

Human life on earth as we know it is threatened by a lethal cloud of radioactive fallout approaching Australia, giving the last survivors of a global nuclear holocaust only a few months to live. As Australia remains untouched by nuclear destruction and radiation, it acts as a safe haven for its residents and the American navy crew of the undefeated submarine, USS Sawfish.

Handsome Gregory Peck plays Captain Dwight Towers, the Commander of USS Sawfish and the messenger of bad news after he discovers a drifting cloud of radioactive fallout heading straight for Australia. A healing widower who lost his wife and children to this nuclear war, Cpt.Towers spends his last days finding comfort in his friendships with Lieutenant Peter Holmes (Anthony Perkins), scientist Julian Osborne (Fred Astaire) and the lovely Moira Davidson (Ava Gardner), a woman with a past who falls for Cpt.Towers.

As the last chapter of their lives come to a close, the characters find solace in different circumstances that take shape. For Moira, it’s in the hope of finding love. For Julian, it’s in realizing a life-long dream.

How would you pass your last days on Earth? We asked some of the Bunker staff and here’s what they replied:

Amy- “I would love to be in Australia! I would take up surfing.”

Lindsey- “I would spend my time on the beach swimming.”

John- “If my family was there, I would spend all of my time with them. ”

Where: Diefenbunker, Canada’s Cold War Museum

3911 Carp Road Carp ON  K0A 1L0

Just one exit from Scotiabank Place

When: Tuesday, August 21st, 2012 at 7pm

Optional tour offered at 6pm

Who: Adults

Cost: Film: $8, Film and tour: $15

FREE for museum members and Connexion card holders.