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Museum Life: On Father’s Day

June 21, 2009 1 comment

It is fitting this blog is launched on Father’s Day. While on one hand it marks the beginning of a new business path, on the other it represents my very identity which is tied so deeply to my Dad. Although he passed away in 2000, the years I had with him influence my daily life in ways I am still connecting.

My first trips to places that preserved history were during family summer vacations by car. Between fighting over the imaginary backseat line with my brother and playing the alphabet game with license plates, we stopped at every kind of historical site, battlefield, museum, national park and sketchy roadside wonder you can think of across the US. Dad was always at the wheel, quietly but consistently opening new doors for us at every turn.

Dad's K-12 school that is becoming a museum

Dad's K-12 school that is becoming a museum

While I may have seemed more concerned with whether the next motel court would have a pool or what treat I would get at Stuckey’s, the tours and text on plaques were etched in my mind. They remained there, often dormant, until a teacher would start a discussion and the sense memory would hit.

Gettysburg? green. Liberty Bell? definitely cracked. Plymouth Rock? small. Old Faithful? made me nauseous. And on it went throughout my education. My classes were reviews of those summer trips and the accompanying talks with my parents about history, traveling, and seeking new knowledge.

Here I am as an adult, with a career that extended those experiences. I have worked in individual museums for 20+ years, trying to create memories for others and show the advantages of “being there” and “seeing the real thing”, even in cyberspace with technology my Dad would have loved. 

But it’s time for my effort to expand. I want to work for all museums, in all their forms, by promoting them, supporting them, and giving everyone a place to share thoughts about them. Now more than ever they need us just to survive.

Museum Life will take us on a journey to discover, remember, celebrate and preserve all those places we stop on the way to ourselves. 

Happy Father’s Day, Dad…. and thanks.

Today’s Links:

Gettysburg: http://www.gettysburg.com/

The Liberty Bell: http://www.nps.gov/inde/liberty-bell-center.htm

Plymouth Rock: http://www.plymrock.org/

Old Faithful: http://www.yellowstone-natl-park.com/oldfaithful.htm

Small Town Minnesota Museums! http://www.co.todd.mn.us/toddcounty/culturalres0006.asp

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