History at the Arvada Center

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Rachel Faulkner writes, I was chosen to tour the history part of the Arvada Center, and I broght my notepad along with me.

I was chosen to tour the history part of the Arvada Center, and I broght my notepad along with me. Our tour guide’s name was Collin Parson, and he was the exhibition director. The Arvada Center began as the Haine’s Log Cabin more than a hundred years ago. It since has been restored into the beautiful building that it is today. According to Mr. Parson, it is always changing and being renovated. The entire building is accessible to wheelchairs and people with disabilities, as is the playground outside. It was Mr. Parson’s job to make this possible. The museum follows what historians call the Smithsonian Standards. This means cornersno stairs without a ramp or elevator,large print, and many interactive activities.As he led us through the museum, we were amazed as we gazed upon the exhibits so rich in history that we felt speechless. “The Arvada HIstorical Society needed a museum to put some of it’s artifacts,” said Mr. Parson. The museum has the original Haine’s Cabin, with some minor repair, and several artifacts directly from the cabin. Other artifacts are on loan from other various museums or gifts from separate families, not neccessarily in Colorado. When the museum was first created, it had roughly 25% of what it has today. Now, there are approx. 2500 artifacts from all over America. There are interactive activities available for children, including plays and various games. Mr. Parson informed us that the oldest artifact in the museum was the cabin, but there are many other artifacts that are from the pioneer time period, whcih is around the time as the cabin was made. One of us asked what happened to those artifacts not on display. “We keep them in climate control storage,” explained Mr. Parson patiently. “And remember, the museum is only about 90% complete.” Mr. Parson then introduced us to Keiarin Bueb, the intern, and he informed us about the jobs of Jerry Gilmore, the Director, William Henning, the history curator, and Bennita Christenson, the Administrator. “One word todescribe thewhole museum?” laughed Mr. Parson, “Gee, I don’t know.How about exciting?”We then ventured into the many art galleries. There are two shows going on currently; the Watercolor Society exhibition and the Nine Watercolor states exhibit. Both of them were fantastic, and they shall be in the Arvada Center for several more months. The hours of the Arvada Center are from 9 am. to 6pm on Monday-Friday, 9 am to 5 pm on Saturday, and 1 pm to 5 pm on Sunday. It is a fantastic center, and while you are there, you can play on the fantastic playground or watch a play in the theater. I highly reccomend it!