Honoring Volunteers and More

Honorees, site administrators, and executive staff at 2011 Volunteer of the Year awards/photo by Don Giles
 As Volunteer Week in Pennsylvania (and the rest of the country) draws to a close, sites on the Trails of History will gather tomorrow to honor Volunteers of the Year for 2011. It’s always a pleasure to meet the honorees and join my colleagues in saying thank you for the tremendous volunteer support our sites receive. It’s also a chance to celebrate the dedication and persistence of all staff, paid and unpaid, who work so hard to preserve our buildings, collections, and landscapes and keep them open to the public. Anyone who’s followed news of the PHMC these past few years knows that these have been trying times, with painful reductions in state funding and workforce (a recent article in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review covered it). On occasions such as the Volunteer of the Year awards, we can focus on the good work behind the scenes and with the visiting public that results from our collective efforts. That’s what I think, anyway. (Look for Trailheads posts over the next month or so highlighting this year’s honorees.)

Cornwall Furnace by Nick Ruggieri
photo by Sean Simmers, The Patriot-News, 2011
Paintings inspired by several sites on the Trails of History are currently on display at the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg. The exhibit, “Pennsylvania: A Commemorative Portrait,” features 16 scenes from across the state by the late Nick Ruggieri, who painted them as part of a U.S. Bicentennial series representing each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties. This collection is on loan from the State Museum of Pennsylvania, which received it as a donation from the Harrisburg Patriot-News (see P-N article here about the artist and the exhibit). Among the works on exhibit are images of Ephrata Cloister, Eckley Miners’ Village, Drake Well, Cornwall Furnace, and Daniel Boone Homestead (as well as other iconic Pennsylvania scenes). The exhibit will remain in place through September. The current public tour schedule at the Governor’s Residence (through June 30) is Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10 am to 2 pm; reservations are required and can be made by calling 717/772-9130.

PHMC/PA Lumber Museum
A mini-grant to the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum Associates from the Lumber Heritage Region and the Pennsylvania Wilds Planning Team will support the conservation of artifacts that will become part of a new long-term exhibit at the museum, following a planned building expansion. The mini-grants are funded in part by a grant from the Community Conservation Partnerships Program (C2P2) of the PA Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources and support projects that promote heritage and nature-based tourism. We expect that the expanded visitor center and the new exhibit will strengthen the PA Lumber Museum’s already significant role as a heritage destination, so this grant will help move things forward. Thanks, LHR and PA Wilds and C2P2!


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