Downtown Vernon mural tours are on throughout the summer on Tuesday evenings and Friday mornings. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo)

Downtown Vernon mural tours are on throughout the summer on Tuesday evenings and Friday mornings. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo)

QR codes bring Vernon mural history to life

Summer mural tours now underway, featuring a new digital aid

Vernon’s mural tours are back, with a digital twist.

The Greater Vernon Museum and Archives has kicked off the walking tours, taking place Tuesday at 6 p.m. and Fridays at 9 a.m. throughout the summer.

“After more than a year of lockdown, we are all looking for something safe to do outside of the house,” the museum’s community engagement coordinator Gwyneth Evans said. “And these tours are a great way to have fun and learn interesting stories about some of the people and places that made Vernon what it is today.”

Knowledgeable and entertaining guides and storytellers Larry Lundgren and Greg Poirier share the stories, history and mysteries behind the city’s many murals.

The beginning of this year’s mural tour season coincides with the launch of an exciting new project from the Downtown Vernon Association. This spring, the DVA partnered with students from Okanagan College’s computer science program to create a QR (quick response) code system for each of the 28 historic murals. Using the camera feature on a smartphone or device, a person simply takes a picture of the code and is guided to a webpage that includes stories and historic information on each mural.

‘The students worked with DVA staff on creating a program for Downtown Vernon’s murals that make it easy to access the information,” DVA public spaces manager Dina Mostat said.

“Downtown’s murals are such an amazing attraction and using QR codes, in addition to the existing guide options, makes it simple and fun to learn about the mural themselves and the stories behind them.”

The QR code program will roll out over the next few weeks.

All Tuesday evening tours must be pre-booked, with Fridays allowing for drop-ins if space permits. For more info and to register, visit vernonmuseum.ca/historic-mural-tours/.

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