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tSlater

Old Museum Restoration

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GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM)- Thanks to many generous donors, the Public Museum of Grand Rapids has one of the largest collections in the country, but most of it you don't see. The exhibits on display in the Pearl Street building hold just 5% of the museum's collection. The rest is stored at the museum's building on Jefferson.

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Plans are in the works to make the archives more available to the public, and restore the old museum building to it's original glory. "We have to present it in a way that they can see it and learn about it, but still protect and preserve it as well."

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I always remembered the Jefferson location as a vault then a museum. :) I'd be curious to see an insurance valuation and inventory.

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That's pretty cool that they're going to open up the archives to the public.

So that's what the Herpolsheimer train looks like today.

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So does this mean we have 2 Public Museums? Great that they are opening it up, but isn't that the whole point of the first museum? :)

I'd love to see the Herpolsheimer's train become a permanent fixture at the museum. I also think they could knock down the diorama's and put cool stuff in its place (like the Indian motorcycle). I mean, dead animals glued into place is fine and dandy, but I could probably go a few blocks down and look at the real thing (the diorama's are actually well done, but I always wonder why they wasted so much space on it).

Joe

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I would love to have the old museum back. That place had character, soul, and such a cabinet of wonders vibe to it.

That other place has always felt so plastic

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So does this mean we have 2 Public Museums? Great that they are opening it up, but isn't that the whole point of the first museum? :)

I'd love to see the Herpolsheimer's train become a permanent fixture at the museum. I also think they could knock down the diorama's and put cool stuff in its place (like the Indian motorcycle). I mean, dead animals glued into place is fine and dandy, but I could probably go a few blocks down and look at the real thing (the diorama's are actually well done, but I always wonder why they wasted so much space on it).

Joe

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Why not utilize the old museum to display things of local significance and the newer museum for larger scale exhibits?

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I think modern museums in general put so much emphasis in interpreting and fancy displays that they lose some of what a museum is for. I'd much rather have a room full of cool stuff to look at than a few multimedia/ interactive showpieces any day. Where can I just find cases and cases of artifacts and my own imagination?

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I agree about the interactive displays to a point, although my kids love the public museum and I don't know if they would without the interactive nature of the "new" museum. It seems like there is a good compromise to be had. Watching the WZZM video, there were so many amazing items (that they were either talking about or I could see in the background), it sure would be nice to get a lot of these items in the main museum. A mixture of interactive and spending hours looking at individual items would be ideal. I like our museum, but feel like I'm done in about an hour.

Does anyone know if the old museum will only be open on special occasions?

Joe

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