Park House Museum

Park House Museum to receive historical designation


By Ron Giofu

The Park House Museum will soon be officially designated by the federal government.

The Park House, located at 214 Dalhousie St., has received a designation of national significance by the federal government, though an official plaque presentation is still forthcoming. The Park House Museum, through curator Stephanie Pouget-Papak, confirmed the news via their Facebook page late last week.

“It has been a two year process that has ended favorably for us and our community. Amherstburg is now a quaint town that was once the frontier of Upper Canada,” the Facebook post reads. “What does this designation mean? It means that our museum’s role in the development of Canadian heritage has been federally recognized.”

The Park House Museum is being designated as a place of national significance.

The Park House Museum also stated that “we are still a not-for-profit organization and will continue to operate as the charitable educational establishment that was founded over forty years ago. As in the past, we continue to rely on your support to maintain the operations and conservation of this building. In gratitude for your support we continue to pledge, inclusive of all visitors, great programming, events, research assistance, preservation of our community’s artifacts, and more.”

The historic designation “would not have been possible without the dedication of our volunteers who donate their time and skills to assist with the museum’s needs.”

The museum added: “We are greatly honoured by this designation and look forward to maintaining history for future generations to come.”

According to the Park House Museum’s website, “historically, the Park House is an early example of Pièce sur Pièce log construction and is said to have been built in the 1790s at the mouth of the Rouge River in Detroit. When Detroit was ceded to the United States, the owners decided to dismantle the building and float it down the Detroit River to Amherstburg.”

The building was moved to its current site in the early 1970’s as receives funding through the Rotary Club of Amherstburg.

For more information about the Park House Museum and its programming, visit or call 519-736-2511.

Variety of events coming to Park House Museum


A number of different events are forthcoming to the Park House Museum.

The next installment of “Music off the Back Porch” returns Sept. 7 from 6-8 p.m., weather permitting. The featured performers will be Linda Girard & Hospice Friends. There is no admission but free will donations are appreciated. People are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs.

The Park House is also having another public paranormal investigation Sept. 14. Sessions will run from 7-9 p.m. and 9-11 p.m. and the cost is $20 per person. Only 20 tickets are available (ten per each time slot).

A “Witches Tea Tasting” takes place Oct. 13 at 1 p.m. It is $10 per person and all ages are welcome. Reservations are required.

The Park House Museum is also hosting Ghost Tours Oct. 19-20.

For more information about any of these events, contact the Park House Museum at 519-736-2511 or e-mail Their website is

The Park House Museum is located at 214 Dalhousie St.

Paranormal investigation held at Park House Museum


By Ron Giofu


Are there ghosts living in the Park House Museum?

Some say they have heard unknown people running up and down the stairs and some claim there have been doors slamming for no reason.

As a fundraiser, the local community museum held a public paranormal investigation Friday the 13th with the event being sold out. It was held in two two-hour sessions with a team from P03 Paranormal undertaking the investigation.

The team that presented the the public paranormal investigation stand in the parlour of the Park House Museum. They include Jay Mower, Megan Garant, Teena Duchesne and Jaclyn Tiefenbach.

“We’re just volunteering to do it,” said investigator Teena Duchesne. “I’ve been a paranormal investigator for six years.”

Duchesne and her team brought their equipment and allowed people to hold dowsing rods, the latter which were used for finding water in the 1800’s and now are used to communicate with spirits.

The two-hour sessions saw teams split up and try to contact spirits on one floor of the museum before switching halfway through and going to the other floor.

Duchesne said they will be part of the Amherstburg Uncommon Festival and will also be part of the Ghost Tours happening at the Park House Aug. 3-4 and Oct. 19-20. Tickets are required for the Park House Ghost Tours and more information can be obtained by calling 519-736-2511 or e-mailing

The ghost tours will also have a history component as well, Duchesne added, as Park House staff and volunteers will join P03 Paranormal in presenting the evening.

Teena Duchesne from PO3 Paranormal searches for activity during a public paranormal session at the Park House Museum.

P03 Paranormal had conducted private paranormal investigations in the past at the Park House and Duchesne said she approached Park House curator Stephanie Pouget-Papak about doing a public one and they agreed to have one as a fundraiser.

Other upcoming Park House Museum events include “Hands on Heritage” Saturdays and Sundays, a “Harry Potter Tea Tasting” Aug. 19 and a “Witches Tea” Oct. 13 at 1 p.m. Pre-registration and payment required for the latter two events.

More information on the Park House Museum can be found at while both the Park House and P03 Paranormal can be found on Facebook.

New exhibit highlighting busy season at Park House Museum



By Ron Giofu


A busy season will be getting underway soon at the Park House Museum, with one of the highlights being the new archeological exhibit.

“Can You Dig It? Archeology in Amherstburg” was supposed to open July 2 on the upper floor of the exhibit but it is now expected to open about a month earlier than that, as an official opening is planned for early June.

Some of the treasures in the exhibit include nails, scissors, plates and many other items that have been dug up over the years. Some artifacts date back to 8000 B.C., said curator Stephanie Pouget-Papak.

A button that fell off a military jacket from the Butler’s Rangers dates back to 1782.

“It’s the only one in existence,” said Pouget-Papak.

There is also a lantern on display that had been pulled from the Detroit River.

Park House Museum summer student Mark Rosati stands with some of the artifacts that will be part of the new exhibit. “Can You Dig It? Archeology in Amherstburg” will debut June 8.

Items that are part of the exhibit include items discovered at the original Park House site, located further south on Dalhousie St. where the Duffy’s Motel used to sit. Other artifacts were discovered at the Gibb House when that was restored at the corner of King and Gore streets. Even more items were unearthed at the Elliott House, which used to be located on Front Road South.

“This year, we decided to feature dug artifacts in our collection,” explained Pouget-Papak.

Pouget-Papak said they have numerous boxes of artifacts but pulled out some of the more interesting pieces for the exhibit. Some were lent to the Park House by Hazen Price, who used to farm in the Front Road South area.

“I tried to pick items that told a nicer story,” she said.

The exhibit was completed earlier than expected thanks to University of Windsor interns, Pouget-Papak added. The exhibit also features an Indiana Jones flare as well, she added, as some of the descriptions are laid out in a style reminiscent of the movies.

The exhibit preview is June 8. Park House members receive their own tour from 6-7 p.m. and it opens to the public at 7 p.m. That night is free for members and $5 for the public. Light refreshments will be served.

Artifacts from the collection of Hazen Price is part of the Park House Museum’s new exhibit.

The first floor of the Park House Museum will be decorated as a World War I house would have been, she said. There will also be more ghost tours this summer, Pouget-Papak added, including a public paranormal investigation that will take place July 13, which is a Friday.

The “Music off the Back Porch” series also is scheduled to get underway June 1 from 6:30-8 p.m., with donations encouraged. People are advised to bring their own lawn chairs that night if they want to hear the music of Will Hawksworth and Brandon Deline.

Admission to the Park House is $4 for adults, $3 for seniors with children 5-16 being $2.50 and children 0-4 free. Family admission rates are $12 and school groups are $5 per student. Pouget-Papak said people can also purchase annual memberships which are $30 for seniors/students, $35 for adults and $40 for families. Lifetime memberships are $250.

For more information on the Park House Museum, visit or call 519-736-2511.

Park House looking to increase accessibility



By Ron Giofu


The Park House Museum has turned to a television on the main floor as a way to alleviate some of the accessibility issues the historic building has.

Although the first floor is wheelchair accessible, the second floor is not, noted curator Stephanie Pouget-Papak. An elevator is not an option for the historic building, she said, and a chair lift option has proven difficult to bring to fruition as that could damage the historic staircase.

“It’s something I’ve been thinking about for a while,” she said. “I came up with an idea to put a television in.”

Park House curator Stephanie Pouget-Papak stands next to the main floor TV that was recently installed.

The television can show visitors what is offered on the second floor if someone is physically unable to climb the stairs. If needed, it can also serve as a message board for visitors and also play videos from the National Film Board of Canada. The latter ties into a future exhibit, as Pouget-Papak said the Park House is looking at commemorating the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I and what the Park family was doing at that time.

Another plan for 2018 is an archaeological exhibit for the second floor.

“We’re probably going to start on that in the second week in January,” she said.

For more information on the Park House Museum, phone 519-736-2511, visit, check out their Facebook page at or follow them on Twitter at