Variety is the Spice of Life


Tour of University of Calgary Collections





Designed by:

Jennifer Francis

Deah Schultz and

Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown




 Museum and Heritage Studies








 November 2001






Variety is the Spice of Life

Tour of University of Calgary Collections


About The Tour:

The walking tour will take approximately one to one-and-a-half hours to complete. The best time to follow the tour would be Monday to Friday between the hours of 10:00 am to 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm. The path of the tour has been arranged in a circular pattern, allowing you to begin at whichever point you find yourself closest to. The C-Train station is located on the east side of campus and paid parking lots are located across from the Oval (Lot 10) and along Campus Drive across from the Science Complex (Lot 22).

Designers: Deah Schultz, Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown, and Jennifer Francis (November 2001); Photographs by Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown and Deah Schultz

Why Campus Collections?

It would be reasonable to wonder why we have chosen to create a walking tour of displayed collections on campus. It would be wise to begin such a response with the answer to the following questions: Why do we collect, and what do collections do?

Collecting is a very strong, socially driven occupation. Since our very early years when we receive toys for Christmas, birthdays, etc. we begin, what appears to be a natural process, to collect. Even serious collectors have difficulty explaining why they are swept away by the drive of such preoccupations. You may think that the types of collections would vary greatly between socio-economic classes. However, studies show that the same types of collections appear across the class range.

The Purpose and Functions of Collections:

The functions of collections are many and varied. Many personal collections are simply for the enjoyment of the collector, while some are used as a status indicator. However, one of the most predominant functions of collections, particularly in institutions such as museums and universities, is to educate.

The goal of this tour is to educate you, the public, on the diversity (variety) of collections (hence, departments and institutions) found on the University of Calgary campus. Many collections were left out, primarily based on their lesser degree of accessibility to the public. All collections visited on the tour are fully available for view by campus visitors.


(1) Olympic Oval Display

The Olympic Oval was completed in 1987 for the 1988 Olympic Games in Calgary. Recognized as one of the world's top venues for competition and training, the Oval is used by athletes from around the world. For more information on the Olympic Oval you can visit their website at:

To begin the tour of the Oval collections go under the stairs in the lobby, where the Olympic Torch, Miners Lamp, and a bronze sculpture are housed. The other collection on display at the Oval can be found by going up the stairs or elevator, which is located to the left of the Oval Gift Shop.

The Oval collection was unveiled on October 16, 2001 as a lead up to the Olympic Games for 2002. It is an introduction to Speed Skating at the Oval and the Canadian Olympic Speed Skating team. The team displayed in the case may change throughout the years, but the introduction to Speed Skating will remain the same. The display offers the viewer an introduction to Long Track Speed Skating and to Short Track Speed Skating. To this there are descriptions on what these two events are and what they involve.

Besides the collections that are housed in the display cases is the art collection that surrounds the lobby area. This collection contains a bronze cast called Brothers of the Wind and two stained glass windows above the entrances. Right across from the upstairs collection is a sign describing the works, and is a great place to view all these pieces. While upstairs why not take a peek at the Oval itself.


(7) Lefarge Trophy Case - Department of Athletics


The Faculty of Kinesiology, which includes the Department of Athletics, began in 1961 as the "School of Physical Education". To better reflect the extensiveness and depth of the faculty the name was changed in 1994 to the "Faculty of Kinesiology". For more information on the Faculty of Kinesiology and the Dinosaur Athletics program visit the website:

The Lefarge Trophy case can be found in Block B of the Kinesiology facilities. It is about half way down the hall across from the Jack Simpson Gymnasium.

The case is named for the company who donated the money to its inception; it was dedicated on, April 30, 1993. The Lefarge Trophy case was built to house the various University of Calgary sports team’s current and past achievements and highlights.1 It is sectioned into the various Dinos Athletics sports played at the University of Calgary. Each team is responsible for their display.

The Lefarge Trophy case has currently undergone some renovations. Down the hall towards the Olympic Oval a new display is being created to house the Dinos Wall of Fame, which was previously part of the Lefarge Trophy case. Next to it will be a display set up by the Canadian Olympic Development Association, which will highlight Olympic Athletes.





Can you find the trophy from 1937?







(5) Department of Biological Sciences


The Biological Sciences building was officially opened September of 1972. The department of Biological Sciences offers both undergraduate and graduate programs in Biochemistry, Botany, Cellular, Molecular and Microbial Biology, Ecology, and Zoology. For more information on the Department of Biological Sciences visit their website:

There are a few displays available for viewing in the Biological Science building. The first is on the main level and can be found across from the study area. The rest of the collection is housed in the basement. To get there from the main floor display take your first right and then the first left, here you will see both elevators and stairs, from either of these go down to the basement and take your first right, and straight ahead and to your left will be several display cases.

The Biological Sciences collection is education-oriented and encompasses the large and diverse fields of the department.1 Housed in the display cases is a small fraction of the collection, due to the extent of the collection and the small area available for displaying.2 The material in the collection has either been collected by the museum or has been donated, and every year new material is added.3

Also in the basement of the Biological Sciences building is the Zoology Museum. The Zoology Museum houses an extensive collection of invertebrate specimens and over 7000 vertebrate specimens.4 For more information on this subject inquire through the department website.

Further Information:


This section is to inform you about other collections on campus which can be accessed by following special procedures.

Department of Archaeology Collection

Contact the department office to book a viewing session.

Office: ES 806

Phone: (403) 220-5227

Nickle Arts Numismatic Collection

Hours of operation for the Nickle Arts Museum

Monday to Friday: 10:00am- 5:00pm

Saturday: 1:00pm - 5:00pm (except long weekends)

Sundays and long weekends: Closed


Adult: $2.00

Senior Citizens: $1.00

Students, U of C community, and children under 6: Free

Phone: (403) 220-7234

Special Collections

12th floor MacKimmie Library Tower

Phone: (403) 220-5972



Special Thanks

Meaghan, Deah, and Jennifer would like to thank members of the various departments for their assistance in gathering information for this project: Constance Martin (Arctic Institute of North America), Jon Greggs (Department of Geology and Geophysics), Warren Filch (Department of Biological Sciences), Kelly Almer (Department of Kinesiology), Colleen Seto (Olympic Oval), Linda Sharpe and Cheryl Olsen (Department of Greek and Roman Studies), and the staff at the Department of Anthropology Office.