For over 16 years we have supported the arts and social change throughout Huerfano County by encouraging talent and attracting tourists from all over the United States to visit our Spanish Peaks Region. Make a pledge to support MoF’s mission on Colorado Gives Day, December 6th, or Spanish Peaks Business Alliance Annual Holiday Giving Celebration!
Thank you for being the heart that keeps MoF ticking. For over 16 years, you have supported the arts and social change throughout Huerfano County by encouraging talented artists, local entrepreneurs, and craftspeople to express their creativity. Your enthusiasm to keep the Museum of Friends operating in Walsenburg helps the staff and board of directors to share its collections, stories, and programs. By being a member and donor of MoF, you allow its mission and goal to create economic opportunities in Walsenburg. Tourists who visit MoF also visit restaurants, coffee shops, and stay in lodging in Huerfano County. MoF’s visitors are from all parts of the US and abroad, bringing much needed resources for our youth and community to thrive.
The Museum of Friends is active and provides changing art and history exhibits that generate hope and spread knowledge of our region’s rich history. The fall exhibits at MoF were on a retrospective note on where we have been as a nation since the attacks of 9/11. Although 21 years have passed, the scars it has left on our collective psyche are visible in the powerful photographs of St. Paul’s Chapel at Ground Zero by Larry Racioppo and the portraits of the first responders who perished in Better Angels: The Firefighters of 9/11 by Dawn Howkinson Siebel. In 2021, Made in Walsenburg Marketplace of Ideas annual holiday event conversations that began with Harold and Veronica Vargas, Ron and Michelle Sandoval, Larry and Susan King evolved into planning for a new permanent exhibit at MoF, The Early Hispano Families of Huerfano County. This permanent exhibit is being developed with the help of author Virginia Sánchez and family historian Sylvia Lucero Brandl.
The K-12 educational programs have resumed post COVID and with help from the Smithsonian Youth Programs, MoF is working on Coming Home: Stories from Main Street, a project to engage local youth in exploring our town’s past and thinking about its future. In collaboration with a RedLine Art in Society grant, we are finishing an interactive walking tour with designer Diane Lohman that will use decorative planter boxes to tell the story of the first inhabitants in our area. History Colorado’s mini grant is underway with the architectural firm Scheuber + Darden Architects to complete the construction drawings for the next phase of the Roof & Dick building rehabilitation.
The new exhibits for 2023 are sure to attract many visitors -- March 19th through September 27th, 2023: EARTH an Environment in Transition with Camille Seaman’s photographs of Antarctica Melting that captures an icy landscape melting away; Larry Racioppo, A Decade after the Hurricane Sandy depicts the devastation and aftermath; John Wark, A Decade after the Waldo Canyon Fire taken from the air.
December 11 through January 24, 2024: Change in Rural America, a Smithsonian Museums on Main Street Exhibit. In 1900, about 40% of Americans lived in rural areas. By 2010, less than 18% of the U.S. population lived in rural communities. In just over a century, massive economic and social changes led to massive growth of America's urban areas. Yet less than 10% of the U.S. landmass is considered urban. Many Americans assume that rural communities are endangered and hanging on by a thread—suffering from outmigration, ailing schools, and overused land. But that perception is far from true. Many rural Americans work hard to sustain their communities. Why should revitalizing the rural places left behind matter to those who remain, those who left, and those who will come in the future? All Americans benefit from rural America's successes. We can learn important things from listening to those stories. There is much more to the story of rural America! (From Smithsonian Museum on Main Street)
Please join us in amplifying the narrative of hope, education, creativity, social justice, and inclusion as we welcome all while continuing to serve our community. Consider becoming a volunteer at MoF or contact us on ways you can help or ideas for new exhibits and programs.
In addition, consider making a monetary gift to MoF as funding is critical and every donation matters. Your support is more important now than ever! You can fill out the attached pledge form, visit Colorado Gives Day with this link: https://www.coloradogives.org/organization/MuseumofFriends or donate at our website www.museumoffriends.org. You can also contribute through the Spanish Peaks Business Alliance Holiday Giving Celebration at https://www.spba.huerfano.org/holiday-giving-donate .
Thank you for your support, and we wish you a happy, healthy holiday season.
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