If you've never visited Souris' iconic castle, then might I suggest you add this to your summer travels!
The Hillcrest Museum (originally known as Squire Hall) was commission in 1910 by Fred Sowden, built for his parents, Squire and Maude Sowden, founders of the town of Souris. Among the unique features of an English castle, the building showcases beautiful architecture including stained-glass windows and an ornate wooden staircase. The castle is located on the west side of the Souris swinging bridge, offering a magnificent view of the Souris River.
"It's exciting that we've been able to turn their home into a museum with the collections of that period," shares Hillcrest Museum Board member, Jackie Kirkup.
Kirkup says they're thrilled to open the museum up to the public this weekend, after completing structural upgrades and some renovations. The leaking roof has been repaired, and a window has been replaced, as well as some interior work is now complete. "With these improvements it takes away that worry of a leaking roof and having damage to our collection."
"We're really looking forward to the summer tourism season," she says. "Our numbers have been steady, even through Covid, so we're hoping there will be even more people out. We've done some extensive renovations in the museum and have revamped a few of our displays, so we're really hoping we can get people to come in and have a look at these new features!"
The museum's butterfly display has seen some improvements as well. "We're very excited to have a new room that showcases our extensive butterfly collection. We have the most amazing butterfly collection that was donated to us several years ago. Off the top of my head, I would not be able to tell you how many butterflies there are, but it is just absolutely amazing! I've never seen anything like it anywhere else! They're well displayed in frames, and the room that we have renovated has bright lights and it really showcases the butterflies even more. So, we're pretty excited about this room," she adds.
The Hillcrest Museum will continue to be open to the public every weekend in June, with full summer hours (7 days a week) for July and August.