November & December 2015 President's Report



I decided to combine November and December’s report because so much of both reports centered on the Christmas Home Tour and the new exhibit.

As most of you know, the awnings and the signage are now in place and, based on many comments, both greatly improved the façade of the museum. Comments such as “classy”, “professional” and “neat” have been heard from the public. I think that we can certainly be proud. The city has paid for half of each project and those monies are now in our bank account. Those city improvement grants are really good to know about and are not difficult to submit.

With Greg Price’s help, I finally completed the CSX rail grant for our garden area, but have not heard anything yet. Will keep you posted.

We did serve some student and adult groups for museum tours these past two months. I have had a second meeting with the public schools social studies supervisor. She seems very excited about sending more school groups beginning in January and also wants to help exhibit some displays. We may be onto a good thing here.

The newest exhibit on Native American flutes and drums will run through January. Many, many thanks to Colleen Brown, exhibit chair, and her committee for the beautiful and natural display which houses the flutes and drums. People have been so impressed with the exhibit and nearly a dozen flutes have been sold. Joe Mareka did a wonderful job during the Christmas Home Tour of displaying his flutes and giving flute lessons to interested parties. Kat Littleturtle and her grandson Kala Littleturtle had wonderful performances using the drums and recalling legends of the Native Americans. If you haven’t seen the exhibit, please take time to do so.

The Christmas Home Tour seems to have been a great success. Everyone said that they enjoyed the choice of homes this year. I have collected nearly all of the money from ticket sales. We’re going to fall between $3,500 and $3,600 if my figures agree with those of Marion Thompson and Greg Price. The three of us try to monitor the monies carefully. Thanks to both of them for assisting me with this. By the way, we had very little overhead this year. The booklets were paid for by a grant from the Lumberton Visitors Bureau and Bryan Britt donated the reception food from Cakes and Pastries. Please thank Bryan Britt and Mickey Gregory when you see them. Also, thank all of you for working so hard to sell tickets this year. I know that it isn’t an easy task. As usual, Evelyn Price was our leader in ticket sales---45 tickets sold. Congratulations Evelyn!

People raved this year about the booklets. I heard such comments as “nice covers and nice paper”, “well organized and put together”, and “very professional booklets”. We can thank Colleen Brown and Melissa Hardy for helping to put those together. They did a beautiful job. We can also thank Jackie Utz who helped us to proofread the booklet prior to printing. Even with four of us proofreading, we left off Wanda Aguirre’s name from the docent list. She is our museum secretary for heaven’s sake! We still can’t quite figure out how it happened. Not to worry. Wanda was so sweet and understanding about the error.

Thanks to Ruth Ann McLellan, the reception was lovely as always. She planned the menu, served refreshments with her usual grace and style, and did a beautiful job of decorating the reception area. Let’s not forget her behind the scenes work---polishing the silver, restocking the reception supplies, providing her own utensils, and cleaning up afterwards. These nice events don’t just happen by magic. Many thanks go to Hilda McNeill and Faye Middleton for arriving early to assist Ruth Ann.

To all of those who helped to decorate the trees, you made a lovely contribution to our important event, as well as to the Christmas season. You can still enjoy the trees if you ride by the museum at night. Many thanks go to Nell Lyon and Wanda Aguirre who chaired this project. They recruited board members to select a theme and to decorate an assigned tree. Nell and Wanda also removed the current objects in the six windows and displayed them neatly elsewhere. In addition, they each worked on their own trees. This project was truly a team effort and the results were beautiful.

I also want to thank my sidekick and our docent chairwoman, Faye Middleton. She decorated the cute animal tree in the Resource Room, put up the electric tree in Dr. Ward’s Room, put up the themed tree in the Ed Allen exhibit, and assisted me with putting out the wreaths. garland and red bows. She also spearheaded the cleaning of the museum prior to the home tour. In addition, Faye continues to provide the docents for the museum on a regular basis, as well as providing them for our special events.

We also want to thank our resident photographer, Jim Kirkland, who traveled to each home to take pictures of the beautiful decorations, as well as pictures at Exploration Station and the museum. He then reviewed and cropped the pictures to place on CDs. He did all of this at no charge. Thanks so much Jim.

Last, but not least, I want to thank Hilda McNeill for providing her convertible for the museum to use in the Lumberton Christmas Parade. Also, thanks to Faye Middleton for loaning me and Anne the Mr. and Mrs. Claus outfits to wear in the parade. We did have great fun representing the museum.

Colleen Brown, our Corresponding Secretary, has written all of the thank you notes associated with the Christmas Home Tour. I also wrote a letter and sent a CD of the tour pictures to each host and hostess who participated in the tour. I thought that it would make a nice little gift from the museum.

I hope that I have not omitted anyone from the “thank you” list. If I did, feel free to let me know. With so many people involved in this wonderful annual project, it would be easy to overlook an important person.

Yesterday, Jim Kirkland and I met Paul Church of the Courier Tribune newspaper in Asheboro at the museum. Paul took tons of pictures of our exhibit and the museum in general. The Courier Tribune publishes a large, glossy magazine each month for the residents of Randolph County. They heard about our museum and wanted to visit and do an article on our new exhibit and the entire museum. We are certainly flattered. Our reputation appears to be spreading around the state.

Submitted by: Richard H. Monroe, Museum President

December 20, 2015

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