Cultural heritage of Vaudreuil-Dorion

The United Cities and Local Governments global institution has in the recent past picked the City of Vaudreuil-Dorion to be among 10 cities in the world that will participate in a project referred to as Agenda 21 for culture. The UCLG picked this region out of a multitude of others in the North American region for its dynamic cultural activities. There have been numerous municipal efforts to forge a place for culture in the region and it is such efforts that have put it on the global map.

There is no doubt that every territory and community has a special role to play in the preservation and development of the planet. Using the cultural mediation approach that Vaudreuil-Dorion municipality has adopted to give the City a face-lift, it is quite obvious especially to the rest of the world that people from all walks of life and from different spheres can work together.

  • What is the Agenda 21 for culture?

For countries that are signatory to the Agenda 21 global culture, the focus is to promote cultural diversity, human rights, participatory democracy and any other activities that will foster a peaceful environment. The Agenda 21 for culture is the first document that cities around the globe will use to turn their local governments into cultural hubs. The 10 selected cities will be sponsored to implement their projects but it is expected that the work that will be done there will act as a mirror to other parts of the world of what needs to be done.

The objective of this first exercise is to use culture as a bridge between other issues that face humanity with special focus on governance. Vaudreuil-Dorion will run their city pilot alongside Colombia, Bogota, Gabrovo Bulgaria, Mexico City (Mexico), Republic of Korea, Jeju Province, and Mayagüez in Puerto Rico.

Félix-Leclerc house museum

The Félix-Leclerc house is classified under museums in the Vaudreuil-Dorion area although it is presented to the public as someone’s residence, no one lives here now. Its importance is pegged to the fact that Felix did at one time live here and so much history about his life was left behind. Having opened its doors to the public in 2014, it offers visitors an insightful journey into the life of one of Canada’s living legends. A resident of Quebec and a great artist, the owner of the premises is known for his contribution to culture through his songs, plays and poems.

The first activity that visitors will engage in when they visit the museum is to watch a screening of the Félix Leclerc which lets them into the universe that has contributed so much to the cultural identity of the region. Once inside the house, every room bears its own theme even one that is dedicated to a time of his life when he lived in Paris. While there is so much to see, visitors will find the services of the interpreters useful as they offer more information on the photographs, sound clips and videos that accentuate the house. Felix’s own room is a library of sound and visual documents that are a preserve of the songs, interviews as held by the films, radio archives, broadcasts and more Evidence relating to Felix’s life.

Outside the main building is a beautiful landscaped garden and terrace where families wishing to enjoy the outdoors can relax. Cyclists too will find the garden a cool sport for riding their bikes and spending time during the summer. Due to dynamic nature of the gardens, many cultural events and shows are held around the property when the weather is hot. This is the best time to sell Canadian souvenirs and particularly carry-away items from the Vaudreuil-Soulanges region. There is however an all year round gift shop on site but which has an online page for visitors to buy unique creations related to Felix or other local artists.

Musée régional de Vaudreuil-Soulanges (regional museum)

This museum is the regional cultural center located in the heart of Vaudreuil-Dorion in the area of Old Vaudreuil. The building that houses the museum was a former boy’s school, which was built in 1859. In 1961, it was designated to the status of historic monument it is today. This institution is particular is dedicated to the preservation of regional heritage owing to its relation to life as it was in the Vaudreuil-Soulanges region. Visitors to the museums have a collection of 7,000 objects of historical significance. There are four rooms within the museum that are used for exhibitions some of which are permanent while others are temporary. Also on display within the museum collection of artifacts is the work of professional visual artists both from within the region where the museum stands to the greater province of Quebec.

The Musée regional de Vaudreuil-Soulanges is a calm environment that offers its visitors a rich and friendly tradition tale of the region. Like many institutions of art preservation in existence today, this regional museum is characterized by a humble start. With the support of the local father during the establishment period of 1953-1958, it was decided that the hall belonging to the church and which was located near the Sainte-Jeanne-de-Chantal church, would be a museum; this Historical Museum of Ile Perrot would be the first home of the regional museum. It was using this establishment that a collection of embryonic first objects was assembled and which today is known as the Vaudreuil-Soulanges Regional Museum.

The regional museum is a symbol of a nationalist vision backed up by a gesture of good will by the passionate people and leaders who are tied forever to the heritage. It is the conservationist efforts of different classes of people that the museum stands to showcase the evolution of the French-Canadian society. The other reason why there was need to set up this museum was to counter the rate at which Quebec’s material heritage was finding its way across the border and into the United States.