By Laura McCaffrey
Community-Centred, Family First
Carleton’s biology department has been successfully hosting its Butterfly Show for nearly two decades. An annual community event held in Carleton’s greenhouse, the Butterfly Show features exotic butterflies from 41 species worldwide. While the show is undeniably enchanting, the real beauty lies in the ways in which the show brings together community, enables family bonding and allows for a fun learning experience for children, students and adults alike.
The show, which attracts upwards of 10,000 people over the course of nine days, is offered free of charge. This decision was born out of the desire to give back to the Carleton and Ottawa communities and to allow everyone to experience the magic of butterflies.
Butterfly Show creator and greenhouse manager Ed Bruggink, who has been spearheading the show since it premiered in 1999, notes that the show has always been strategically held around family-oriented holidays. In its early days, the show was held in the spring, around Mother’s Day; in more recent years, it has taken place in the weeks preceding Thanksgiving.
“The goal is, and has always been, to encourage time spent with loved ones,” says Bruggink. “I’m always trying to have a family event.”