Coming to MTG Hawke's Bay is a chance to see something of local history, to catch a glimpse of the depth of toi Māori, and to explore the creative gifts of artists and artisans.
More importantly, it's an opportunity to reflect on the value of collected treasures coming to us from many generations of creative hands.
The Hawke's Bay Museums Trust collection is one of the richest amongst provincial collections in Aotearoa New Zealand - it is also one of the oldest in the country.
William Colenso, the first New Zealand Fellow of the Royal Society in London, was one of the earliest supporters of the Philosophical Institute, which was to become our current museum, MTG Hawke's Bay.
The museum houses this collection for the people of Hawke's Bay, but it is open to all, and now that international travel is back, expect that visitors from many countries will come by MTG to enrich their travel experiences in New Zealand.
Like all museums, the part of the collection on display is only a small part of the whole.
For this reason, MTG is tasked by its trustees with the primary object of displaying the riches of the community on a rotational basis.
This gives a great scope for exploration; from small pieces of silver, say, to larger pieces from across the country. From modern paintings to needlework and embroidery.
The standard of MTG exhibitions is very high, the complex a frequent prize-winner in national awards for the quality and scope of its exhibitions.
MTG is also a centre for research and learning, where people can deepen their knowledge and increase their scholarship.
Online research gives access to the collection, iwi can view the taonga, and scholars can see historical documents. MTG staff are available to help researchers, and guide them through the holdings.
Both Napier City Council and the Hastings District Council support MTG via funding. Its foundation is a grouping of local people who have come together to help fund acquisitions for the collection and support the work of MTG staff.
Hawke's Bay Museums Trust are the guardians of the collection, and provide an independent voice regarding the way MTG functions and the collection is used.
Institutions like MTG exist across New Zealand.
They are multifunctional: important repositories for local history; sources of cultural inspiration; reflections of the community in which they are based; and pointers to the future for those who care to explore their contents and gain inspiration and satisfaction from their wealth of knowledge.
A window into the community, and an opening to a wider world.
The people of Hawke's Bay are lucky to have this institution.
Value it and visit it - support it and spread the word.
Dr Richard Grant is chair of the Hawke's Bay Museums Trust.