Tuesday, September 30, 2008

General Lew Wallace Study and Museum wins National Medal for Museum and Library Service


GLWSM one of five museums honored nationwide; second museum in Indiana history

CRAWFORDSVILLE, IN, September 30, 2008— First Lady Laura Bush will award the General Lew Wallace Study and Museum the 2008 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation's highest honor for museums and libraries, at a White House ceremony on October 7.

Each year, the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), in coordination with the White House, presents the National Medal to five museums and five libraries that have helped make their communities better places to live. Each winning institution also receives a $10,000 award.

The National Medal is the nation's highest honor for museums and libraries that help make their communities better places to live. The General Lew Wallace Study and Museum is one of only five museums in the United States and its territories to receive the medal this year and only the second museum in Indiana to receive this award since its inception.

IMLS awards the National Medal to 10 institutions annually for outstanding community outreach programs. The General Lew Wallace Study and Museum received the award for its Lew Wallace Youth Academy, which incorporates Wallace's life story into lessons in problem solving, creating art, and serving others; its Taste of Montgomery County event that created an economic engine for small businesses in the Montgomery County area and brought new people to the museum's campus to celebrate local food and music; and its participation in the public forum "Build a Better Downtown." Additionally, the Museum has ensured the lasting legacy of General Wallace with the recent rehabilitation of his carriage house as an Interpretive Center complete with a state-of-the-art collections storage facility. Through exceptional educational programming, collaborations with local and state organizations, active collections care, and community development opportunities, the General Lew Wallace Study and Museum fulfills its mission to "celebrate and renew belief in the power of the individual spirit to affect American history and culture."

"We are deeply moved by this award. The museum staff and board have worked diligently to connect with our community and we believe we've made positive transformations in our members, program participants, and visitors. To have this work commemorated with the National Medal is an incredible honor," said Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko, Director of the General Lew Wallace Study and Museum.

"By its example, the General Lew Wallace Study and Museum shows us the kind of influence and impact that museums can have on community life. Through its innovative programs and active partnerships, the Museum addresses the urgent and changing needs of the community it serves," said Anne-Imelda M. Radice, IMLS Director.

The other winners of the 2008 National Medal for Museum and Library Service are:
1. The Buffalo Bill Historical Center, Cody, WY
2. The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia, PA
3. The Jane Stern Dorado Community Library, Inc., Dorado, PR
4. The Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, MO
5. The Lower East Side Tenement Museum, New York, NY
6. The Miami-Dade Public Library System, Miami, FL
7. The Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, FL
8. The Skidompha Library, Damariscotta, ME
9. The Skokie Public Library, Skokie, IL

The National Medal awards are made every year by IMLS, the primary source of federal funding for museums and libraries. Each organization will also be honored in an upcoming ceremony in Washington, D.C., and will receive a $10,000 award. This is the second year that IMLS has awarded medals to 10 institutions. In previous years, the National Medal was known as the National Award for Museum and Library Service and was awarded to three museums and three libraries. Additional information about the 2008 National Medal winners may be found at http://www.imls.gov/news/2008/092908.shtm.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit www.imls.gov.

Friday, September 19, 2008

The Taste was a Big Helping of Fun

How awesome was the Taste of Montgomery County? Words cannot describe, but I'll do my best anyway! There was so much to take in that day, I'll just hit a few highlights. Of the twenty booths, I was only able to taste a few things, but one of my favorites was the couscous with lamb from The Juniper Spoon. When it came to dessert, it was hard to decide, but I think I agree wtih the judges that the winner for best taste was the turtle cheesecake from Awesome Edibles caterers. Mmmm!

The music was great, too, and all the bands put on a good show. One I enjoyed the most was the Tad Robinson Band. I didn't know I liked blues music until I heard them! It was definitely a crowd-pleasing event, and I also had a great time running into lots of folks I hadn't seen in awhile. I heard there were over 2,000 people there, and I believe it. The only downside was that some of the vendors ran out of food that I had been hoping to try, like the fried cheesecake I saw on the menu card. Oh well, hopefully that will be back next year. I know I will.

Lew is Launching into School!

Even though Lew Wallace hated school as a child, he's getting ready to launch back into the classroom - but this time as the teacher. The Lew Wallace Discovery Kit has been finished by intern Rachael Matthews and is reserved for a visit at St. Bernard's School in just over a week. We're wrapping up the final inventory and packing the kit...making sure all the parts are in place for the students. This Discovery Kit is the second in the series, but like the first Wallace Women Discovery Kit, this one has touchable artifacts from our Education Collection, games, and a binder full of activities and lessons for the teacher to incorporate into curriculum. This kit is fit for a variety of ages, and the maiden voyage is to become a station in a kindergarten class. There's so much great stuff in here, I couldn't resist trying some of it on!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Summer Fun

Summer at the Study has been a wonderous treat for the nature lovers.

The gardens are in full glory and the wildlife has found a bountiful feast.

Lantana, verbena, butterfly bushes and coneflowers are visited by goldfinches, hummingbirds and numerous varieties of butterflies.

The yellow swallowtail butterfly is the most prevelant variety. Flitting from flower to flower, they dance a graceful ballet for the watchful visitor.

Goldfinches fly from garden to garden, eating the coneflower seeds. The soft, high pitched song they sing is a musical treat for any and all who visit.

Hummingbird have found the garden this year. Butterfly bushes, geraniums and the morning glories have all been visited by the 'hummers.' They make a slight squeaking sound as they drink the nectar of the flowers.

Fall is fast approaching and the mums are starting to bloom. Soon the 'hummers' will be headed south and the seed of the coneflowes will be all eaten.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Gearing up for the Taste at Wabash Community Day

Marketing Coordinator Kara Edie and I went to the Wabash College Community Day to spread some of our excitement about the upcoming Taste of Montgomery County! With the countdown well underway - only 4 days left - our goal was to make sure every Wabash student knew what was going on Saturday, September 6. Not only did we pass out every last Taste button that we had, but we also got a few responses like, "oh yeah, I went last year and it was awesome!" and "we already have our tickets!" I thought it was a great show of community.

Hope to see you there!