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In the News

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

Grant will help Seaside Museum construct Lewis and Clark exhibit

The Daily Astorian

SEASIDE — Lewis and Clark will soon be appearing life-size at the Seaside Museum, thanks to a $9,000 grant from the National Park Service.

The museum applied for the grant through the Service’s Challenge Cost Share Program. The museum and historical society must match the amount with in-kind labor and donated materials, bringing the total for the project to $18,000, Exhibit Chairwoman Helen Gaston said.

The new salt works exhibit will feature life-size mannequins of Lewis and Clark, a cairn, a “fire,” sound effects and interpretive panels. A Native American exhibit will be located immediately behind the salt works display, Gaston said.

Museum volunteers will receive help from Lewis and Clark researchers. Fred and Lisa Mattfield of Long Beach, Wash., will serve as exhibit specialists. They have worked on many displays for local museums.

“We’re redoing almost every exhibit in the museum, in order to vacate one whole room for this,” Curator Mark Tolonen said. “It’s very exciting. It’s always good to be current and get something new for return visitors. There’s also the timely nature of the whole Lewis and Clark commemoration.”

The new exhibit should be ready to go by the end of March, in time for spring break visitors, Tolonen said.

The museum has also received other money that will enhance its educational and operational programs. A $1,100 grant from the Juan Young Trust will be used for the museum’s educational discovery kit program. The hands-on educational trunks contain historical artifacts and educational classroom materials. The three trunks have different themes: items from Butterfield Cottage (circa 1912); leisure activities of 100 years ago; and early schools. The Juan Young Trust supports nonprofit organizations that promote health, welfare and education of children under age 21 in Oregon.

In September, the museum received a $1,000 donation from U.S. Bancorp Foundation for general operating costs. The money will aid the museum’s day-to-day operations and ongoing programs.

Tolonen also announced that the museum is planning an 800-square-foot addition on the north side of the building. The room will be used for archives and will meet archival storage requirements, with proper lights, temperature and humidity. The museum’s present archive storage room will be used for exhibit storage and research materials.

An architect is working on the plans and Tolonen hopes to break ground in January. Many volunteers will work together to build the space in a “barn-raising” style. The room will be a very simple structure, with no windows or plumbing. Total cost will be approximately $50,000. Funds will come from the museum’s savings fund, donations and other fund-raisers.

© 2003 The Daily Asorian