It certainly does not seem like I have spent the last twelve years involved with this Museum—just over 40% of my life, in fact. More unbelievable still is that March will mark my sixth anniversary of being at the helm of the PoCo Muse as Executive Director. Having this historical perspective makes me certain that 2014 is shaping up to be one of the best years yet.
Attendance was very strong during the last quarter of 2013. Exhibits, programs, and events brought 2,291 visitors from October through the end of December—more than the same period in 2003-2006 combined! Our team is poised to make an even greater impact in 2014.
This year’s plan is to continue the Stories Project Series and rejuvenate the permanent exhibits of the Porter County Museum. Integration of story, due in large part to the Central Stories Project, helped redefine our exhibits in 2013. Naturally, we hope to do the same throughout the coming year. The following is a list of scheduled exhibits at the PoCo Muse for 2014:
Untitled Robert Cain Art Exhibit (February 16, 2014 – May 31, 2014)
A selection of works from Robert Cain will be on display in the Robert Cain Gallery of the Porter County Museum. More information about the artist and exhibit will be released via our Facebook page in the coming weeks.
Making Her Place Permanent Exhibit (March 16, 2014)
Too often, women’s history is a silent one. The newest permanent exhibit will give a voice to the women and movements that have shaped Porter County. Making Her Place will challenge visitors to think critically about how true change is achieved.
Ogden Dunes Stories Project Exhibit @ Hourglass Museum (May 18, 2014)
The Porter County Museum continues the Stories Project Series with the Ogden Dunes Stories Project. The Ogden Dunes Stories Project seeks to provide a social history of life in Ogden Dunes, and preserve the memories of all who have a connection to this vibrant community.
Hourglass Museum Exhibit @ PoCo Muse (June 22, 2014 – January 31, 2015)
The Hourglass Museum in Ogden Dunes and the PoCo Muse collaborate to build a second exhibit at the Porter County Museum. This exhibit will share the story of early life in Ogden Dunes by introducing visitors to O. D. and Tilly Frank, the builders and original owners of what is today the Hourglass Museum.
Broncho John Sullivan Permanent Exhibit (September 21, 2014)
Broncho John, Porter County’s own cowboy, spent countless hours on the courthouse square in Valparaiso telling tales of the Old West. Broncho John himself will once again bring those stories to life in the renovated exhibit as he shares stories about the Spanish American War, both Chicago World’s Fairs, or Buffalo Bill Cody’s Sideshow. These stories from the Wild West blur the lines between myth and fact, but are sure to be entertaining!
Native American Permanent Exhibit (November 16, 2014)
The new, permanent Native American exhibit will provide information and artifacts that tell the story of early Indiana history, including natural history, its first inhabitants, and the story of the first interactions between the Native American population and incoming settlers. This exhibit will ask visitors to consider the effects of this history on the present and future of the Porter County community.
I hope you take the time to stop in periodically throughout 2014 to see the progress happening everyday at the PoCo Muse. If you have the time, I encourage you to get involved as a volunteer. Visit www.pocomuse.org/volunteer for more information about the opportunities the Museum has available. Be sure to check back regularly for future blog posts about upcoming programs and events.
See you at the PoCo Muse!
Kevin Matthew Pazour
Porter County Museum