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There is no better way to explore Saskatchewan's cultural and historical past than by introducing yourself to the province's arts, music or museums. Each region gives you a chance to see local productions and get an in-depth look at how the region has developed over the last 6,000 years (and in some cases, longer).
For art lovers, the first stop should be the famous MacKenzie Art Gallery in Regina. Their permanent collections include work from international artists, as well as a significant emphasis on Canadian modern and historical works of art. They have special exhibits on Western Canadian works and an impressive focus on the First Nations. From there, grab tickets to the Globe Theatre, home to the largest professional company in the province, as well as the only ongoing theater-in-the-round stage in Canada. Attend an event at the Conexus Arts Centre or take in a stop on a concert tour at the Brandt Centre. Classical music fans will find themselves enthralled by the skillful and soulful performances given by the Regina Symphony Orchestra.
Interested in knowing more about the region's history? Visit the Government House Museum, completed in 1891, which once served as the home of the Lieutenant Governor of the North-West Territories. Recently restored, visitors can enjoy an authentic Victorian tea, stroll through the Edwardian Gardens and experience the interactive presentations and art pieces in the J.E.N. Wiebe Interpretive Centre. From there, take a tour of the RCMP Heritage Centre and examine artifacts and exhibits of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The Life Sciences, Earth Sciences and First Nations Gallery at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum continue to draw crowds. Don't forget the more than 150 sciences exhibits, many of which involve hands on learning perfect for kids, at the Saskatchewan Science Centre.
If you are traveling around Swift Current, make time to visit the Swift Current Museum. It's filled with artifacts, displays and programs designed to promote and preserve the history of the city, as well as the region. Canadian sculptors like Davidson and Fafard are prominently displayed on the grounds of the stirring Shurniak Art Gallery located in Assiniboia. You can get to know the milling past of the early 1900s by visiting the Esterhazy Flour Mill or explore the Tunnels of Moose Jaw. Tunnel tours connect you to everything from Chinese immigrants to the infamous Al Capone.
Dramas, comedies and musical all go up at the Persephone Theatre, located at River Landing right along the South Saskatchewan River, and are a must for fans of live performance visiting Saskatoon. Modern art lovers won't want to miss exhibits lining the walls of the Remai Modern (formerly Mendel Art Gallery).
Meanwhile, you can also discover fascinating details about early settlers at the Saskatchewan Western Development Museum, particularly as you walk through the life-sized 1910 Boomtown. Diefenbaker Canada Centre offers replicas of the Privy Council Chambers and Prime Minister's Office as they were in the late 1950s and 1960s. Prince Albert, the oldest city in Saskatchewan, is home to four historical museums, including the Prince Albert Historical Museum, Diefenbaker House, the Evolution of Education Museum and Rotary Museum of Police & Corrections.
Speaking of Prince Albert, the Prince Albert Arts Centre, a noted historical landmark, was originally constructed in the late 1800s as the Prince Albert Town Hall and Opera House. This arts space welcomes visitors and members of the community alike to its doors. Galleries like The Mann Art Gallery beckon, and if you want to watch noted artists at work, just follow the "Blue Moon" signs to mark the participating studios along the Thickwood Hills Studio Trail near Shell Lake each August. The Diefenbaker Theatre, a 600-seat performance space inside The E. A. Rawlinson Centre for the Arts, puts up shows that win raves throughout the year.
Up in Creighton, you can visit the Creighton Museum and Tourism Centre. Here, you can relive life in the province's first gold rush town and see a replica of an authentic Northwest Mounted Police post from the early 1900s. If you find yourself near Denare Beach, be sure to stop in at the Northern Gateway Museum to see artifacts and displays on First Nations culture, early 1900s mining techniques and artifacts from the fur trade. The oldest building in the province is also located in the Northern region, as the Holy Trinity Anglican Church still rises over the banks of the Churchill River.
Make plans to visit Saskatchewan and head for Regina. Home to a wide range of excellent attractions, Regina rarely disappoints. Be sure to take in a show or explore an event at the Brandt Centre, Regina's premier event venue. You can find the Brandt Centre just west of downtown next to Confederation Park.
Opened in 1977, the Brandt Center has been entertaining locals and visitors alike ever since. Within the Brandt Centre, there are 7,129 seats available for concerts, and 6,200 for hockey matches. Throughout the year, you can find a number of different music and live events held at the Brandt Centre.
The Conexus Arts Centre is located in downtown Regina in the Wascana Centre Park and overlooks Wascana Lake.
The centre was built to provide a facility for exhibitions and performing arts in 1967, and to commemorate the Canadian Centennial.
Visitors to the centre enjoy performances by the Regina Symphony Orchestra, in the Main Theatre.
The centre's Convention Hall, Hanbidge Hall and Jubilee Theatre are also ideal Saskatchewan venues for conventions, events, seminars and weddings.
The Mendel Art Gallery is located along the South Saskatchewan River in Saskatoon. Since its opening in 1964, the gallery has showcased historical and contemporary art and remains one of the more visited galleries in Saskatchewan. Visitors can see over 5,800 pieces of art in the permanent collection.
With free admission, visit as often as you like. Be sure to browse the selection of unique gift items, jewelry, glassware, ceramics, wood carving, toys, clothing, stationary and books in the Gallery Shop.