Sunday, May 12, 2024 is Mother’s Day and it’s also Manitoba’s 154th birthday. The Mennonite Heritage Village Museum in Steinbach will be celebrating both this weekend. 

Interim Executive Director and Program Manager at the MHV, Robert Goertzen, says they want to keep mom’s day special, so they are celebrating our province’s birthday on Saturday, May 11.

This year the MHV is working together with Eastman Immigrant Services (EIS) to provide free family fun.

Goertzen says, "It's a wonderful collaboration this year, together with EIS, we are working on creating an afternoon, with old-time fun and fair games. There are going to be races and different activities for the whole family. So, it's going to be a wonderful afternoon for everyone in the community."

He adds, "And I'd like to extend a special invitation to anyone who is part of the Eastman Immigrant Services family, their clients and staff."

Manitoba Day at MHV in 2023Manitoba Day visitors to the MHV in 2023

Gwen Reimer with Eastman Immigrant Services say they are thrilled to partner with the MHV for this year’s Manitoba Day festivities. 

Reimer says they will begin their children’s activities after the flag has been raised and the birthday cake handed out. The Eastman Immigrant Services staff and volunteers will be set up and ready to go around 12noon on the grass behind the Print Shop and the Reimer Store, just off the MHV Main Street.  

"There are going to be family fun and fair games. We will have a live magician, live music and a balloon artist from 1:45 to 5:00pm. So, we're looking forward to the celebration and we hope to see you there. Everyone’s invited.”  

Reimer adds, "It'll be a great way to spend the day, right? Just to have a good time, family fun doing fun activities and free admission.”

The Mennonite Heritage Village Museum gates will open from 9am to 5pm, with all the outdoor buildings open to explore.

The Manitoba Flag raising ceremony is at 11:00am at the steam shelter. Goertzen adds, “We are expecting local dignitaries will bring their greetings and share what Manitoba Day means to Steinbach and area, followed of course by free birthday cake for everybody.”

"So yeah, it's going to be a fun day, with the weather usually around 15 - 18°. So, it’ll be a wonderful day to just check out what's new at the museum, take a walk around the pond and just enjoy the day.” 

Goertzen notes, “We are expecting hundreds of families to be involved with lots to do." 

Manitoba Day at the Mennonite Heritage Village Museum will also include an opportunity to plant a pansy for mom with help from the Steinbach and Area Garden Club. The planting will take place starting at 10:00am.

Planting Pansies for Mom on Manitoba Day 2023Planting Pansies for Mom on Manitoba Day 2023.

Manitoba Day events at MHV 2024

The Manitoba Act, which created the Province of Manitoba, was given Royal Assent on May 12, 1870, which paved the way for the proclamation on July 15, 1870. Within a few short years, the Privilgium of 1873 was sent on behalf of the Dominion of Canada to Mennonites living in Imperial Russia to invite them to live in the newly formed province. By September 1874, a contingent of families arrived at the confluence of the Red and Rat rivers and settled in the communities throughout the East Reserve.

One of those communities became Steinbach, and this year we celebrate the 150th year of its founding, and 60 years of the Mennonite Heritage Village!