Historical day packed with fun | PHOTOS

A day of fun, history, and entertainment was had at the Whyalla Visitor Centre on Saturday as part of the Whyalla Maritime Museum marking the 78th anniversary of the HMAS Whyalla launching.

The open day gave locals an opportunity to check out the ship as well as the comprehensive historical information available inside the Whyalla Maritime Museum.

Visitor Centre Team Leader Teresa Coles said the Open Day was very popular with families, and around 200 people took the opportunity to explore the HMAS Whyalla.

While the parents were busy reading up on some history the children were kept entertained by D'faces of Youth Arts, who ran circus activities such as juggling and magic tricks on the day.

The Navy Cadets cooked up a sausage sizzle to feed the crowd on the day with the Whyalla Lions Club and Rotary Club of Whyalla Norrie also contributing.

The Whyalla Community Brass Band provided fitting music for the day while Triple Y were broadcasting live from the museum.

Ms Coles said many locals were visiting the museum and the ship for the first time.

"It's great for kids to get on board and feel like they are part of the ship. The model railway museum is really interactive, the amount of activities they can do here makes it a bit more fun," she said.

"We get to throw in some educational stuff as well."

Ms Coles said families were often surprised by the quality of the maritime museum during their first visit.

"It's a bit of a hidden treasure because you can't see it from the road...it's rated in the top five across Australia, so it's a really significant museum in its own right," he said.

"The gardens are beautiful too and they're the oldest gardens in Whyalla, so it's very special to see them."

The Open Day was part of South Australia's History Festival, and it's just one event of many being held in Whyalla, with others including twilight tours of the Whyalla Steelworks and sunset tours of the HMAS Whyalla.

To book a tour for yourself, contact the Whyalla Visitor Centre on 8645 7900.