What's New



August-September 2020 Update
Greetings from the Staff….
     Catch the Time Capsule Opening Saturday, Sept. 5 at 12:00 noon.  It's contents are unknown, and are likely buried 7 feet below the surface in a large pipe.  Retrieving the capsule may take some time.  The event will be recorded at available for viewing later.  Watch for it on Facebook.

     After closing for the season on Sun. Sept. 13, we will meet Sat., Sept 19 to clean and protect outdoor artifacts and equipment for the winter.  Volunteers are welcome for this 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. work session.  Stay past 1:00 and enjoy a light lunch (NOT POTLUCK this year.) 

     Once closed, work begins in earnest on construction of our new Ore to Steel exhibit in the main exhibit building.  Do you like to paint?  Painters are sought for indoor painting of sheetrock walls in that exhibit, or outdoors on the Wabco haul truck on the grounds. 

What an usual start to 2020!  The COVID-19 pandemic forced us, along with other Minnesota museums, to delay our opening until July.  Our phased re-opening started with 4 days per week and soon expanded to 5 days each week: Thursday through Monday.  We have put additional cleaning and sanitizing procedures in place for visitor and worker safety.  Some exhibit buildings have small occupancy limits (25% capacity) but our 13-acre grounds can accommodate 250 visitors.
   We used May and June to complete repairs best done without guests present.  In the Castle, we have a new gangplank, a new awning over the rear entrance, and a refinished front door.
We're in the midst of re-designing our website; it will look familiar but contain more photos.
     Our 2020 membership drive was very successful, and membership numbers are up!  Members have shown a heart-warming willingness to make additional donations in addition to their modest dues.  This helps us with our fixed cost, such as insurance, utilities, and the constant maintenance that this site requires.
     We encourage you, our history-minded followers, to keep a journal or log of what this period was like from your perspective.  If you are not a journalist, write yourself a letter describing what this time what like for you.  What was your daily life like?  What did you do for fun? Save some of the pandemic humor circulating on the internet.  How did the epidemic affect you personally?  In years to come, the newspaper articles about the pandemic may remain, but your personal individual memories will only be saved if you record them now. 

​September 1, 2020 NEWSLETTER

TIME CAPSULE to be opened...
            At Last!  The TIME CAPSULE created in 1993 by Peter Taramelli  and Wayne Dalke will be opened at high NOON on Saturday, September 5.          
            Watch it live, catch it on Facebook, or watch for a video being made for us.  The capsule is inside a concrete and steel structure, topped by a metal sculpture.
            What’s inside? We haven’t a clue, as no letter was left behind, no article appeared in the area papers, and no one living can tell us.  So you’ll find out what’s inside at the same time we do!
What’s been Happening:
January--Annual Dinner: The Volunteer of the Year award went to Susan Frankovich.  Susan continues to fill in at Admissions this summer.
April—Membership Drive: Volunteer Liz Jackola once again took on the task of mailing your renewal letters, and sending out packets. 
—Iron to Steel Exhibit:  We received $3000 grant from Chisholm Community Foundation for better showcasing Geology and Mining.  Design is by Venture Exhibits, who created our Iron Range Life and F. Lee Jaques Railroad Diorama exhibits.
—Roosevelt School Chalk Art: Four panels were donated by Gail Samsa Good, deftly framed by Rick Puhek, and installed in the Schools of the Range exhibit by Rick, John Newbauer and Denny Borich, who also restored portions of the panels.
May—Gangplank: John Newbauer, Ed Waters and Denny Borich tore out the rotting gangplank into the castle, reframed the uprights, and re-decked it with high quality, non-slip composite decking.
----COVID-19:   Every single school and tourist group cancelled its planned visit
June—Front Castle Door: Steve Charon, (maintenance,) Bill Taramelli (mason) and Denny Borich repaired the 1940 door frame, steel door, and hinges.  The structural repairs and a sharp fresh paint job have it working—and looking—like new.
July—Museum Open to the Public!  With our “sneeze guards,” hand sanitizer and extra  cleaning, we opened in phases: 4 days weekly at first, then Thursday to Monday.  Tuesday and Wednesday is by appointment only. We are operating with just 3 employees in 2020.
August—Castle Awning: A standing-seam steel awning over the South Door was built and installed by Advanced Design of Cloquet.  This will protect the new door from weather and keep the castle floor dry on rainy days.
Visitors: the Museum is seeing respectable visitor numbers.  The number of families with children is up, while the proportion of seniors is down.  We’ve had no foreign visitors, and a higher proportion are from Minnesota than in past years.  Velma Ostman and Jane Bartlett greet our visitors in Admissions.
Save the Dates
Sat., Sept 5: Time Capsule opening, starting at noon
Sat., Sept 19: Fall Clean up Day: 10-1;        We will serve a light lunch around 1 pm for all members and volunteers.  It will NOT be potluck this time. We ask that you call or email so we buy the right amount of food.
Call for Board Members & Volunteers
   We are short several board members.  Please consider a 2-year term; to learn more, please contact either Chuck Palmquist (crpalmquist@outlook.com) or Carol Borich  (cborich@mchsi.com). Or just call the Museum at 218-254-5543
Projects Ongoing:
DM&IR Caboose: Attention has shifted to the roof repair.  New signs (banners) are in the works and will go up soon.
Wabco Haul Truck: Ziegler again lent us a lift, and Chuck Palmquist laid on a second coat of paint in the high places.  We need help finishing the ground-level painting so please make that offer!
July 15, 2019 NEWSLETTER

Greetings from the Staff….
            Howdy all and greetings from the Museum!  This season so far has been busy as the Museum has played host to a many school groups, the Scouts Voyageur Camporall, and Tour of Minnesota cyclists’ overnight stop. We are on track to exceed both 2018 visitor numbers and Museum Store sales this year.
Member numbers are running just a little ahead of 2019, but the number of hours contributed is way up. A huge thank you goes out to all our members and volunteers that have supported us and assisted with maintenance, tours, and organizing events.
Iron Pour
            The Iron Pour on June 8th and 9th was held in conjunction with Igneous Metal Arts. New York Artist-in-Residence Athena LaTocha poured her works, then enhanced the many pieces until her exhibit opening at the MacRostie Art Center in Grand Rapids July 5.  Her work remains on display at the MAC through July 26.  This expanded Iron Pour was funded by a $5000 Legacy grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council.
Train Days
            Train Days 2019 coincided with the Tour of Minnesota cyclist visit.  This dedicated and committed model railroading group sets up, runs their trains, and tears down in one of the most efficient operations imaginable.  One of these talented trainmen even put new tires on our old tandem bicycle!
Improvement Projects:
            Century Fence finished the installation of a new fence separating the museum grounds from Iron Trail Campground on July 8, and the city has completed its inspection.  A new drive-through gate and a walk-gate to the campground perimeter road were included. This project was made possible with funding from the Legacy grant program funded by Minnesota taxpayers, plus matching funds from the City of Chisholm, donations from members, and many volunteer hours clearing brush. This completes the fencing all around the grounds, providing security for the Museum’s artifacts. 
Castle Door
            The back Castle Door has been replaced and locks installed between the upper and lower levels of the Castle. With this project complete, the Museum is in a better position to host events using the Castle bathrooms after hours. Currently we are planning a custom overhang to shield the door from the elements and rain gutters to direct roof water away from the castle.

 Archived Newsletters:

Arpil 2019 (Boys Camper All)


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