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Museums of Mississauga Receive Award of Excellence

Oct 15, 2010

The Museums of Mississauga have received the Ontario Museums Association (OMA) Award of Excellence for the Benares DVD Project, which was designed to increase accessibility of the historic Benares site, both in terms of language and physical access.

The project includes a 13-minute DVD introduction to the site in English and French, with English subtitles for hearing impaired, traditional Chinese characters, Urdu, Polish and Japanese; an "Upstairs and Downstairs" video tour of the basement and second floor; a Benares virtual tour for online viewing; and five thematic features exploring Benares' history in detail.

"We are extremely proud of this project, particularly the innovative DVD which will enhance visitors' experience of the Benares historic house," said Susan Burt, director of the City's Culture Division. "Not only does the DVD provide context for tours in different languages, it allows those with limited mobility to view a video tour of the entire house from the main floor."

The project was funded primarily by the Benares Endowment Fund endorsed by the Museums of Mississauga Advisory Committee, with additional funding from Friends of the Museums of Mississauga. The DVD was produced by VCR Active Media. It is available for $10 at both Benares Historic House and Bradley Museum, and copies will be distributed to all libraries in the Mississauga Library System.

Benares Historic House, which reflects daily life in the World War One era, was opened as a  public museum operated by the City of Mississauga in 1995. Ninety-five per cent of the artifacts in the house are original and four original buildings on the six-acre site are still standing. The museum offers costumed, guided tours, educational programs and special events.

The OMA works to promote museums and advance the standards of professionalism for museum workers throughout Ontario, by advocating for funding and community support, providing educational opportunities and networking with peers.

As Canada's sixth largest city, Mississauga is home to 734,000 residents and 55,000 businesses, including 63 Fortune 500 companies with Canadian head offices or major divisional head offices. A diverse, progressive and award-winning municipality located on the shores of Lake Ontario in the heart of the Greater Toronto Area, Mississauga is one of Greater Toronto's Top 90 Employers for 2010. Enhancing its citizens' quality of life by providing superior services, revitalizing its infrastructure and conserving the environment, Mississauga is committed to innovation, operational excellence and fiscal responsibility which are reflected in its motto: "Leading Today for Tomorrow."

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