What is the membership value proposition at Mennonite Heritage Village (MHV)? This is one of the questions the Membership Committee of MHV’s Board of Directors asked itself last year. In other words, why would anyone want to be a formal member of MHV?
Is it because they value the preservation of Mennonite artifacts and history? Is it because they like to visit the museum frequently and therefore value the free admission that members receive? Is it because they see MHV as a significant social gathering place that enhances the quality of life in our community? Or is it because they value the opportunity to participate in decision-making at MHV’s Annual General Meeting (AGM)? The committee’s conclusion was that none of these factors alone would attract a large group of members.
For years, our members have had free access to events at MHV; received our newsletter, Village Voice, free of charge; enjoyed the right to vote at our AGM; received a 10% discount on merchandise purchased in Village Books and Gifts; and qualified for free or discounted admission at most of Manitoba’s other Signature Museums. But the committee felt that additional membership benefits should be offered.
At the November meeting of our Board of Directors it was decided that the following new membership benefits will be added to the existing benefits: a 10% discount on program fees, facility rentals, and restaurant purchases; a 50% discount on admission fees for members’ guests; and eligibility for free guided tours which will be offered from time to time. These additions will substantially enhance MHV’s membership value proposition.
Membership options at MHV include Life Memberships and Annual Memberships. Our Life Membership was originally designed for couples only. When couples with young children inquired about a Life Membership, we had to inform them that this type of membership was not suited to a family. However, we are now able to offer a reconfigured Life Membership which accommodates all situations. Beginning January 1, 2018, all Life Memberships purchased will be individual memberships which include the member’s dependent children under the age of 18. This means that everyone is treated equally: singles, young families, retired couples and everyone in between. All existing Life Memberships will remain unchanged.
But perhaps the most exciting news is that the MHV Board of Directors has also decided to reduce the cost of Annual Memberships. Whereas an Annual Membership for a couple or a family was previously priced at $80, the 2018 price will be $50. The cost of an Annual Membership for a single person has been reduced from $40 to $30. This brings MHV’s Annual Membership fees more in line with those of other similar organizations.
MHV is here to serve its constituency by preserving and interpreting artifacts and stories, by creating community festivals and hosting community events, and by attracting tourism with economic benefits for the community at large. This is most likely to happen if we are able to engage our constituency and, at the same time, make ends meet financially.
Calendar of Events
December 23 – January 7, closed for Christmas
February 4, 7:00 PM - Vespers Service
February 16, Guys & Dolls Gala
February 17, Winter Carnival
- Category: Mennonite Heritage Village
- Written by Barry Dyck