Parksville Through the Ages

A historic romp celebrating our community’s bygone era and the storied history of the heritage McMillan Arts Centre

A digital media exhibition in the Cloakroom Gallery

The McMillan Arts Centre (the MAC) started life as the Parksville School in 1913.    The school was built on land donated by Ann Hirst, where McMillan Street and Memorial Avenue meet.  Mothers of World War I soldiers erected a memorial cenotaph in front of the school building and oak trees were planted along Memorial Avenue to the front boulevard of the school.   The jewel of Parksville, and one of the oldest buildings in the area, the school operated until it finally closed doors in 1976.  Ten years later, the Oceanside Community Arts Council and Inclusion Parksville came together to purchase the building from the School Disrict, with the McMillan Arts Centre opening galleries, gift shop and studio and continuing the tradition of arts and education in our community. 

Mission Statement:  The MAC provides a vibrant inclusive environment to experience the creative climate of the Oceanside community.

The McMillan Arts Centre is part of the local Historic Buildings Tour – visit online @

 Parksville School House in the past

With thanks to the Parksville Museum and Parksville Historical Society for archived materials and Mr. Andrew Collins, videography