County museum staff are prepping for upcoming events

Published 6:03 am Sunday, March 24, 2013

Column: Preserving the Past, by Pat Mulso

With April just around the corner we have two very important dates to remember. April 18 will be our annual tour guide orientation. This meeting will take place at 1:30 p.m. in the lower level of the museum and is for all our current tour guides as well as those who are considering being guides for our school tours in May. We will have information packets for our new guides, introductions, discussion and then a tour of the village as well as the museum and new addition. Please call and RSVP if you plan to attend the orientation. Our number is 373-8003.

Pat Mulso

Pat Mulso

The next important date is April 20 from 8 a.m. to noon. This will be our annual village clean up date. As we open the village for the season on May 1, there are many things that need to be done. Floors swept, windows washed, and items cleaned to be ready for our tours and Discover History Days. If we are able to get 20 volunteers or so this can be completed in just this one morning. If you are able to volunteer for this one morning, call 373-8003 to RSVP. We will supply the cleaning products, but if you have extra rags, or prefer to work in gloves, please bring them with you. If we are able to get more than 20 volunteer we may even finish early!

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The museum depends heavily on volunteers for many of our special projects as well as many day to day operations. We are open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. as well as by appointment for tours or special meetings or events. Our librarian and I, the executive director, are the only full time employees. We have two four-hours a day employees who work the front desk, answer the phone and take care of membership and other day to day activities. Our two maintenance and housekeeping employees work only five to eight hours a week. So as you can see we have very limited staff, however we average 115 to 120 hours a week in volunteer help. Without this tremendous support by community members, we would not be able to operate and provide the year round services that we do. Thank you to our more than 150 volunteers who are dedicated in the jobs that they do for us to help preserve and protect the history of Freeborn County and its people. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer for us, stop by and pick up one of our volunteer brochures or call and we will send one out to you. We have a form for you to fill out that will give us an idea of the type of interest you have and what projects you are willing to help us complete.

This is also the time of year when summer events are being planned. We normally have two or three weddings in our village church each summer, as well as class reunion gatherings, family reunions, special events and programs. Please call to reserve the museum, village or special building if you have an event you would like to happen at the Freeborn County Historical Museum, Library and Village.

We will also provide programs for your organization either at the museum or at your location. Call to discuss topics and types of programs available and schedule your program with us for your group or organization.

The museum will host a four-hour refresher defensive driving class from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. April 8. The cost per participant is $19, and you must pre-register. We will need your name as it appears on your driver’s license, your address, date of birth and driver’s license number. This four-hour refresher course is needed every three years after the initial eight-hour class is taken to continue receiving a discount on your auto insurance. We will also host a class from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. May 14.

Have a safe and happy Easter from the staff at the Freeborn County Historical Museum, Library & Village.


Pat Mulso is the executive director of the Freeborn County Historical Museum in Albert Lea.