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  • 1.  Regional Interpretive Center -

    Posted 11-20-2020 11:32 AM

    We would like to hear from this forum, so your collective knowledge can be applied to our project.


    What might be the pro and con arguments for this kind of centralization of services?  

    Here is the plan being discussed:




    Vision: To establish a regional center that interprets the incredible ecological and cultural diversity of our bioregion, in combination with facilitating other community functions.




    Approach: Combine our local museum, library, community center, and potential other functions such as a teen center, performing arts, and visitor information into a single facility located in a central location near schools, residential areas, and the downtown area, and near the interstate highway.



    What do you see as important things to consider as we are going through the planning process to construct a regional interpretive center?  Nothing has been decided yet, so your input will help guide us.


    If you are part of such a complex, what suggestions do you have that will help make this a viable and valuable community resource?  Anything you have learned through the years that you could share, so we can learn from those mistakes or accomplishments?


    We look forward to this exchange of information, so your collective knowledge can be applied to our plan.  


    Thank you for your assistance,

    Jean Nels

    Executive Director

    Mt. Shasta Sisson Museum



    Sent from Finest Planet WebMail.

  • 2.  RE: Regional Interpretive Center -

    Posted 11-24-2020 09:17 AM

    This is a fantastic idea - combining and pooling resources for the community just creates that "critical mass" of services that will undoubtedly draw a wide mix of people to the facility. And, because of that, it will expose audiences to other resources they might not have looked into if they were at separate locations.

    I've worked in the tourism, hospitality, non-profit and museum industries for the past 10 years or so, and have found combining these efforts to be fruitful. Recently, the welcome center and visitor services for our county (St. Mary's County, MD) were moved to the brand new Patuxent River Naval Air Museum, which was a several million dollar facility that interprets the history of the nearby Patuxent River Naval Air Station. Built in from the start was the Visitor Center, which is right at the entrance and next to the museum gift shop, and holds materials and displays related to local and regional destinations, historic sites, museums, dining, lodging and the like. 

    Similarly, one of our newest museums in downtown Leonardtown (the county seat with charming small-town atmosphere), the Old Jail Museum, is also the official Visitor Center for the Town of Leonardtown and serves the same purpose at the one at the Naval Air Museum, but instead displays information for all things to see, do, eat and stay in Town, as well as the wider St. Mary's County. 

    Staff at both locations act as both museum guides and visitor services personnel, and are knowledgeable as "ambassadors" for our region. 

    Our county also just recently built a multi-million dollar joint Library and Senior Activity Center in Leonardtown, which has that dual purpose as well. 

    These, along with several others, are great examples of joint-use that further an overall goal for many community organizations. I'd be happy to expand upon anything or give further thoughts!


    Andrew Ponti

    Marketing Manager

    St. Mary's (MD) County Museum Division



    Karen E. Stone

    Museum Division Manager

    St. Mary's County MD

    Cell #240-925-0293


    Museum Logo - Final  alliance_accredited_fullcolor



  • 3.  RE: Regional Interpretive Center -

    Posted 11-24-2020 11:11 AM

    Thank you, Andrew, for your response.

    We agree that this concept has many positive aspects.


    Was there any pushback to combining these services? 

    What do you see as important things to consider as we are going through the planning process to construct a regional interpretive center? 


    Where did you get the necessary funding?


    Thank you for any advice you can give,