Volunteers have been helpful with museum’s expansionPublished 6:36am Sunday, April 28, 2013
Column: Preserving the Past, by Pat Mulso
Interior doors are being installed, ceiling grids and tiles are going up, bathroom fixtures, cabinets and ceiling lights are here and being put in place and walls are being painted and flooring in some areas are complete. Wow, our addition is finally becoming a reality. As I prepare for the final break through openings from the new to the old building we are shuffling exhibits, moving storage items and trying to carry on business as if nothing is going on around us — a challenge to say the least, but an exciting challenge! Nearly 300 items and boxes have been moved from one of the storage areas as we prepare for two openings to be cut in the cement. The challenge is where to put the items to maintain a level climate and safe environment for the items being moved.
Many volunteers are working to help save money as we work toward completion of the addition, such as painting, installing ceramic tile, etc. Others have donated items such as flooring, paint and fire extinguishers to help cut costs. All are needed and appreciated!
As we get closer to completion, volunteers will be needed to move exhibits and storage items to their new locations.
With all that being said, I would like to say thank you to all who have donated or pledged to our project in cash or product. We have raised $1.4 million of our projected cost of $1.7 million. So this means we need $300,000 to complete the addition. If you are able to make a contribution, there is no better time than now. With your help we can complete our project without a mortgage. This new facility will be an asset to our community now and for future generations.
We are in the midst of our Discover History preparation. This year will be the 16th year that our 11th-grade humanities students have prepared presentations for our local fifth-graders to enjoy learning about the past. This project will be recognized in an article in the Star Tribune on May 5. This year will be a bit of a challenge with our late spring, wet and muddy village and construction still in progress, but we will manage the best we can. History will prevail!
We will host a four-hour refresher defensive driving class from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. May 14. The cost is $19 and you must preregister for the class. You will need your driver’s license at the time of registration and your AARP number if you are a member.
The month of May will be busy with school tours, Discover History, special programs and planning for events this summer. Watch the paper and my article for the date of an open house to show our progress on the addition. We’re just waiting for the mud to dry up so we can safely get you into the addition, now if the weather would just cooperate.
Save the dates, June 7-9 will be our annual Eddie Cochran Weekend. The event will be full of activities Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Some events will be taking place here at the museum and fairgrounds and some at locations around town. Flyers have been posted around town, and details will be shared as we get closer to the date.
The Freeborn County Genealogical Society meets at the museum the second Monday of the month at 7 p.m. and the Golden K II Kiwanis meet weekly on Wednesday mornings in the museum’s lower level. These are two ways we support local organizations in our community and appreciate their understanding as we work through our building expansion process. Have a great week and remember, what happens today is history tomorrow.
Pat Mulso is the executive director of the Freeborn County Historical Museum in Albert Lea.