Museum board welcomes Kyra Kaercher as ninth member


Last updated 10/10/2023 at 11:43am

Havre Daily News/Christy Bambrough

The H. Earl Clack Memorial Museum Board conducts its monthly meeting Monday in the Board Room of Havre Inn and Suites.

The H. Earl Clack Museum Board has added Montana State University-Northern professor Kyra Kaercher to its ranks at its regular meeting Monday night where members discussed their ongoing work at Havre History Center, the buffalo jump and more.

Board Co-Chair Lela Patera said Kaercher is an extremely knowledgeable and well-traveled archeologist and will be a valuable addition to the board, which now numbers nine.

Patera said Kaercher has students who are interested in working for the museum during the summer, which is also an asset.

The board voted unanimously to appoint Kaercher, who was not able to be at the meeting that night, to the board.

During the meeting Museum Manager Caroline Tuss provided members with an update on the museum's recent activities as well.

Tuss said the Wahkpa Chu'gn Buffalo Jump is closed for the season and they are working on winterization, as well as moving items from the jump to the museum until the season starts up again.

She said they've also added some new items to the gift shop including some new toys, and their dinosaur-related items and ornaments continue to sell well.

She said revenue, excluding a recent book sale, is down a bit from this time last year, but they have still provided tours for quite a few schools in the region.

Tuss also said she thinks the rotating seasonal display at the museum is due for a bit of a revamp and she's open to suggestions about how it can be updated.

The board also heard from H. Earl and Margaret Turner Clack Memorial Museum Foundation President Elaine Morse, who talked about some recent setbacks at the museum.

Morse said she's continuing to try to get an elevator installed in the museum, but they might have to scale those plans back.

She said they are thinking about instead installing something like a stairlift which will be less cumbersome to install and much less expensive compared to a passenger elevator.

She also said a piano the museum recently acquired has encountered a mechanical problem and has stopped working.

She said there will be someone coming in February to look at it, and it seems like the issue shouldn't be too difficult to fix.

Morse said a full rebuild of the piano's innerworkings would be a $30,000 job, but it doesn't seem like the problem is that expensive based on what she's been told.

She said board member David Sageser, who was not able to be at Monday's meeting, is looking into purchasing a new computer for the museum, and told her that the minimum cost for a computer that would meet their needs is $900 but there are higher-end models that may be a benefit, though they may cost up to $4,000.

The board also discussed this year's Dinosaur Christmas in December at the Holiday Village Mall, a free event for children that includes arts, crafts, cookies and other activities.

Tuss said she knows some people who do face painting who might be interested in adding to the event.

Patera said they still have another meeting before the event to discuss it, and they are always open to adding things.

The board also decided to try holding their meetings at the museum from now on, starting next month.


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