Friday, January 10, 2014

Library management to help museum

Ketchum council agrees to transfer lease


By ERIC AVISSAR
Express Staff Writer

    Ketchum city officials expect the Ski and Heritage Museum at Forest Service Park to benefit from a transfer of operations to the Community Library.
    The City Council unanimously approved a transfer of the Ketchum-Sun Valley Historical Society’s lease to the library during a meeting Monday.
    Society Board President Heather Daves said that with the transfer, the museum will have more favorable lease terms and will help the Historical Society financially.
    “This is a win-win for both organizations,” Councilman Baird Gourlay said. “The problem was that this lease had been a drag for the Historical Society. The library obviously has better fundraising capabilities, and I think this will make it a better operation.”
    On Dec. 9, the Historical Society voted to accept the library’s proposal to take over curating and operations of the museum. Library Executive Director Cynthia Dillon has previous experience in museum curation at the San Diego Museum of Man.
    The Ski and Heritage Museum features exhibits on Hemingway and the history of Sun Valley Resort, and includes a Ski Hall of Fame.
    The city owns the property, and Dillon said she is excited about the prospect of working with Parks and Recreation Department Director Jen Smith to create a new lease once the current one expires in September.
Dillon said she wanted the lease to be transferred to the library under the current terms and conditions.
    “For us, motivation to resume lease operation would be undermined by any lease modifications at this time,” she said. “Essentially, we want to go in and get into that space so we can begin operations of assessing strategic plans for the museum that will hopefully be in line with the Parks Department too.”
Smith said she’s excited about the new partnership and believes it will eventually help Ketchum residents further appreciate the city’s history.
    “This will definitely raise the museum’s profile,” she said. “This area has such a rich community history, and showcasing our heritage is very important. The library will immensely help boost its presence.”
Eric Avissar: eavissar@mtexpress.com




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