By Ron VandenBoom
The H. Earl Clack Museum Foundation annual meeting and banquet has been scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 23, at the Duck Inn Olympic Room.
There will be no-host cocktails from 6-6:30 p.m. with dinner starting at 6:30 p.m.
Keynote speaker for the evening will be Jay Russell, development director for the C. M. Russell Museum in Great Falls.
The annual business meeting will include the election of four new members to the board of trustees and an update on the events and accomplishments of the past year.
Membership registration forms or board of trustees candidate forms are available at the Heritage Center.
Tom Rygg, treasurer of the foundation, said the Saturday dinner will also serve as the kickoff for the upcoming capital campaign. The campaign hopes to raise $2 million over the next three years.
The exact nature of the campaign has yet to be determined and, according to Rygg, the first fund-raising activity will not be announced until sometime after the new board of trustees is seated and several decisions regarding the campaign have been made.
We have needs for the building and we want to do it right, Rygg said, explaining that many of the plans relating to the building are expensive and all renovations need to be approved by the State Historic Preservation Office.
Rygg specifically mentioned projects to repair or replace worn and damaged windows, handicap lifts for the front of the building, and the 30-year-old heating system, as examples.
Rygg explained that the board currently expects to use $1 million of the funds raised to supplement the buildings operation. This would be done by creating an endowment that would provide enough interest to pay for utilities and other day-to-day expenses that currently run about $50,000 annually.
Building improvements would be paid for with $500,000 of the remaining $1 million and museum enhancements would be covered by the remaining $500,000.