Square’s Museum Needs Your Support

I had this other blog all prepared and ready to go to remind everyone about the day of fundraising the North Texas History Center (NTHC) has planned on March 27th and was just waiting for the date to get a little closer.  Then I read this article (click here) in the Courier Gazette today and felt I better push this up. 

I used to volunteer at the NTHC back when I lived in McKinney before. It was fun.  I “worked” with two others, one of whom could read sheet music and would treat us to some of the old songs that were laying around.  I also volunteered more recently at the civil war reenactment the article references, “The Battle for Myers Landing”.  (I’ve posted my pictures on Shutterfly at onthequare.shutterfly.com  from the day I just attended as a patron and the NTHC has posted a lot of Civil War videos on their YouTube Channel).  I’m shocked that they didn’t do better financially on that one.  It leaves me wondering who the bulk of that went too.  Were the reenactors paid?  I know how things can rack up – I’m an accountant.  I know how easily a basic company Christmas party can hit 20 – 30k.  But that is renting space at a hotel and catering.   I’d love to see an accounting just out of my own curiousity, not to quibble over it.  It is, as they say, spilt milk.

I am not a big Civil War fan.  My family (on both sides) came to the US in the mid 1800’s to escape violence in Germany.  The war is just something that happened after they got here.  My great-grandfather fought for Illinois and my family has  a letter from him written by the light of Atlanta burning.  My husband similarly finds the enthusiasm for civil war reenactment odd.  He is from the North and he says it is just not the bee in the bonnet that it is down here.   

They’ve had some really neat events recently that my work schedule has prevented me from attending.  On the 19th, Don Newsome did a presentation on the love stories between the US president’s and their first ladies.  I’ve always meant to read the book of Ronald Reagan’s love letters to Nancy and I will definitely pounce on tickets if they do that presentation again. 

This last Saturday, Mr. Newsome was incognito as the cowboy “Slim” relating the stories of Hank the Cowdog , I’m assuming, to kids. Sounds cool even if I’m not the target audience. But I only saw the event listing because I was looking at their website.  

 I’ve thought sometimes that people (visitors) just don’t know that the museum is down there.   There is a buffering “dead space” between the museum and the square on the Virginia side.  The parking lot after The Antique Mall Company and the parking lot after Salon Georgio’s tend to merge into a wall that says “end of shopping” and the museum, which should stand out, doesn’t.  It might be worth mentioning, however, that the other side of the block, the Louisiana side to the east of the square, is one of the busiest parts of the square.  I think it might be MOM & POPcorn that is pulling people down the street, but  – whatever the reason –  that is most definitely the busiest part of the square.  There’s almost always someone in Doug & Lyndi’s Ski Shop, too. Maybe the museum needs a mascot to stand out there and sell tickets to the passersby. 

I imagine the fundraising dates still stand and hopefully that will make all the difference.  If you support having the museum open down there, they really need your help.  If you can’t make it to the fundraisers, take a gander at their gift stop and/or write a letter to the County to let them know that people do care about this place.

The fundraisers on March 27th  start off from 9am to 12am at the Heard Nature Conservancy with the “Take A Hike”  fundraiser. Participants can choose from one of three trails – a mile, a half mile or a mile and a half, kids can get free face painting and there will be an Easter Egg hunt for kids up to 7 years old.  I have no kids myself but the Heard is very photo-friendly and I can only imagine a throng of children looking for eggs. Tickets are $20 for adults, $5 for kids ages 3 to 17. Families of 4 (two adults, two kids) are $40 . $10 from each adult ticket will go towards supporting the North Texas History Center.  More information is available at http://www.heardmuseum.org/ .

That evening, there will be a dinner and lecture by Arch Bonnema at the Haggard Party Barn in Plano about an “enormous petrified ship” that the speaker believes may be none other than Noah’s Ark .  The dinner is at 7 PM and the lecture will begin at 7:30 PM. Tickets are $75 for 1, $125 for 2 or $150 for 4 and are available on-line through the museum’s gift shop (scroll down). 

I can’t be sure if these are the same petrified remains that are most often suspected to be the Ark, located on Mount Ararat in Turkey and conveniently closed off from investigation. It doesn’t look like it.   According to my google, Mr. Bonnema returned from Iran in the summer of 2006 with evidence of the Ark after a fourteen-man expedition led by Dr. Bob Cornuke.  According to the Christian Marketplace blog, the team was a virtual Who’s Who of CEOs and Christian writers. I also found a slew of videos of Mr. Bonnema speaking on the subject.

Any thoughts?

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2 Responses to “Square’s Museum Needs Your Support”

  1. Vicki Day

    Beth on the Square:

    Thank you for taking time to mention our situation here at the History Center.

    Let me address a few of your questions regarding the Re-enactment. A majority of the costs fell in to operations and marketing. Within the operations category security was a whopping $5740.00, port-a-potties for our visitors and participants $4390.00. Insurance alone was $5300. On the marketing side, $13,000 for broadcast media advertising was the largest spend. So, as you can see it adds up quickly. We had difficulty under writing the event through sponsorships. The economy and the Battle for Myers Landing as a first year event made large sponsorships almost impossible to sell. That kept us totally dependent on the gate numbers and unfortunately not enough people visited the re-enactment over the weekend to make up the difference.

    I hope this helps clear up a few of your questions. Please let me know if you have others and I will do my best to provide you with accurate details.

    Thank you again for your support.

    Warmest Regards,

    Vicki Day
    Executive Director
    North Texas History Center

    Reply
    • Beth

      Wow, it’s amazing how that adds up. I hadn’t even thought about security and advertising (2 things you definitely don’t need for a company Christmas party!) If there is anything I do to help, please let me know! And I’m totally serious about pouncing on tickets to the next presidential love lecture, hint, hint! 🙂

      Reply

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