BIG NEWS!! We have signed a lease for a building in Elmwood at 110 S. Main Street that started August 1, 2023. We will be opening this as a satellite office to our main one in Bay City. We feel this will allow us to better serve the community in terms of proximity to their areas and it will also allow us to tap into a wider network of volunteers that span the entire county. Additionally, we were in dire need of more space to house our collections and the eastern side of the county provided the most economical option for our organization. The basic operating costs for this location will be around $6,000 per year, we hope with increased visibility and presence, we can increase our membership, donations, and seek grants to help cover these costs.
Our history centers in both Bay City and Elmwood will cover and serve the entire county, so people can research, donate, and work on volunteer projects that would cover all communities in our county. Our Prescott location is run by our Prescott Area Historical Society and their focus is on Prescott and the surrounding area.
Since August, our volunteers have been working on getting the Elmwood location up and running. Volunteers, Julie Huebel, Mary Erickson, and Pat Mory (with the help of others!) have been busy setting up shelving, moving furniture into the building, setting up a false wall to hide storage at the back of the building that will double as display boards, and deciding what to move from our very full Bay City office into this new space. To begin with, we have decided to move our fabric collection. This includes all things fabric in our archives. Even without being fully set up yet, people are stopping in when they see cars parked outside the building on Main Street. It’s been wonderful to so quickly feel like part of the community there.
Volunteers are working on finishing up a country school display, some of it we share each year at the Freier School during the Pierce County Fair. We also plan to have a rotating collection of art displayed on our gallery wall. Our first collections we will highlight are the historical paintings of Spring Valley local, Tom Gunderson and country schools depicted in various art mediums by a variety of artists. These will be ready for viewing by early December.
This location will be open Thursdays 10-3 as volunteer availability allows. The more regular volunteers we have there, the more consistent we can be open. If you are planning a visit from a distance, please reach out to confirm we will be open. Please note, the office may be closed for the month of February due to volunteers being out of town.
We’ve decided to host the 2024 annual meeting at the new Elmwood office, see our calendar of events for details. A great opportunity to check it out.