BCMA Conference 2023

Gathering FAQ

 Haida Gwaii  |   September 25 – 28, 2023
It’s our great pleasure to announce that the BCMA’s 2023 gathering will take place in person during the week of September 25 – 28, 2023!
The BCMA community has been invited by our colleagues at Saahlinda Naay Haida Gwaii Museum and the Haida Heritage Centre to join them for three days of learning on the land, connecting with each other, and exploring our collective work, impact, and responsibilities.


We will keep you up to date and release more information as it becomes available. Please see below for some answers to frequently asked questions. Beyond what we have added to this page, we are not able to reliably answer questions about event details at this point. Haawa [thank you] for your patience.



Does the 2023 gathering have a specific theme?

The title of our 2023 event will be “Kil ‘láa – Kind Words”. The gathering will be based on Haida values including respect, responsibility, asking first, and telling the truth.


Is there a  schedule available?

The plan is to offer pre-conference workshops and activities for Early Birds on September 24 and 25. The first official day will be Tuesday, September 26, when guests will be welcomed by our hosts and the gathering will begin with ceremony. September 27 & 28 will be full days of learning and discussions. Barnacle Day on September 29 will offer guests who are sticking around a chance to connect and reminisce over coffee for some informal networking.

Learn more here by taking a look at the schedule

When will registration open?

In-person tickets are sold out. Similar to previous BCMA conferences, we are offering Digital Access to the conference so that those unable to join us in person can attend key sessions. Please click the link below to learn more about Digital Access tickets. 

Learn more and register for Digital Access here.

What if I need to cancel?
  1. Registration(s) may be canceled for a full refund until August 31, 2023.
  2. Registration(s) can be transferred* to another delegate until September 22, 2023.

*Delegates who are unable to attend the gathering may transfer their registration to another individual by modifying their registration in the registration portal. For assistance with transfers, please contact us at bcma@museum.bc.ca. The original registration rate and any event tickets purchased will transfer to the new attendee. Transfer requests will be accepted up until September 22, 2023.

Will conference bursaries be offered to support travel costs?

The BCMA has offered bursaries to help members access the 2023 gathering and looks forward to offering bursaries again next year. Like past BCMA conferences, the goal of bursaries and subsidies is to provide funding to members and delegates from historically underrepresented groups and those needing additional support to access the event. 

Please visit this page to learn more about bursaries.


If I can’t travel to Haida Gwaii, are there other ways I can participate in or learn from the 2023 gathering?

With the support of the Department of Canadian Heritage’s Strategic Initiatives Fund, the BCMA looks forward to offering a variety of virtual learning and networking opportunities associated with the 2023 gathering. We thank our members who participated virtually in our 2022 conference series and look forward to building upon the lessons of the past years to offer even richer virtual experiences. If you have ideas or suggestions for how our virtual conference programming can best support you, or want to learn more about the BCMA’s HerO (Heritage Online) program, please contact us.

Find out more about Digital Access tickets here.


Can you share any details about travel options, accommodation, and the host community?

The gathering will mainly be held at the Haida Heritage Centre in Skidegate. There won’t be one central hotel but we have secured transportation and will provide a shuttle to and from the Haida Heritage Centre on the main days of the gathering. We will let you know the planned stops within the communities of Skidegate and Daajing Giids for the event shuttle soon. Most accommodations will find a stop within a few minutes walk from their location.

The gathering will be bookended by several travel days to spread the load on airports, ferries, and shuttles and take into account the capacity of local infrastructure.

Please visit our “Getting Around” page to learn more about Haida Gwaii, how to get there and where to stay.

Can you provide more information on the venue and accessibility of the event?

Please note that we are currently working on complete descriptions of the accessibility of our venue, the Haida Heritage Centre. We aim to provide you with accurate and helpful information on physical accessibility, way-finding, accommodations for visually and hearing-impaired people, sensory considerations, washrooms etc.

There is a single-stall, wheelchair-accessible washroom near the session spaces. There are also male and female washrooms with multiple stalls.

We are asking that attendees not wear perfumes, colognes or scented products to help create a more neutral space for those with scent sensitivities.

For those with scent sensitivities or asthma, please be aware that there may be some smudging within select sessions, and the ceremony will involve an outdoor fire. You are welcome to quietly step away or outside if you need to.

The outdoor space can be accessed through multiple doors – we will let you know which is closest to you at the sessions. There are some doors where there may be a few steps down to the grass, and the outdoor space is uneven grass with a short hill down to the beach access.

To ensure that we offer an event that reflects our host community’s venue capacity and that our delegates are received and remembered as respectful guests, there will be a limited number of available tickets. The maximum number of attendees will be 150.


Will you implement a code of conduct for the gathering?

Yes, we are asking all attendees to agree to the code of conduct during the registration process and adhere to it during the event. To read the full code of conduct for the gathering, please head to this page.


What happens if something cannot go ahead as planned?

In the event of changes to the schedule or format of the gathering (due to illness or other unforeseen circumstances), we will do our best to offer an alternate setup for sessions. This may include remote speakers, smaller panels or rescheduling sessions for a later date.


Most importantly: What about food?

The schedule outlines which events will offer food and drinks and we kindly ask delegates to support local food businesses for the meals that are not provided. Venues for learning sessions and workshops will offer water, tea, and coffee unless stated otherwise. Food is not allowed in the Performing House with an exception for the Film screenings on Wednesday, September 27.

Please let us know of any dietary needs during the registration process by filling out the form provided.