We picked up our new staff member and our board member insisted we make a small pit stop so that I could see La Jolla Cove. We stopped at the Children’s Pool, a protected cove where the kids and the seals play together on the beach.
Anne has arrived to complete a project to survey the museum archive and establish system by which the papers are digitally linked to the artifact collection through the Past Perfect database. Anne is a recent graduate of Simmons and was at the SAA conference looking for the next step. You can’t get work like this many other places, I told her, you’d better come on out.
One of my goals here is to give professional opportunities that interns can’t receive anywhere else. I want to help them develop programs that showcase their skills. I want them to be able to package themselves so that when they move on to the next place, they can excel. I want them to interact with the youth of the Valley and provide examples for what can be accomplished if you are willing to take a risk.
Anne is the first of 3 interns we plan on hosting in the next few months. Soon we will travel around the region collecting artists’ work as stock for the giftshop and begin creating displays to promote their local galleries and art. Our programming is kicking off again starting with a continuation of the Sundance Festival’s Film Forward program and a massive curation day in celebration of National Museum Day. October will see an art opening and a photography class. We are working to make the museum a place people are comfortable to visit. We are working to make people feel what we do – that this is the most fun museum ever.
The Desert Museum and the Colorado Desert Archaeology Society are partnering to give a big boost to the re-curation of our inventory project. Affiliated with the Colorado Desert District California State Parks, the Colorado Desert Archaeology Society (CDAS) normally provides volunteer curation services to Anza-Borrego State Park. The CDAS group understands the research potential of our collection and its value as a complementary collection to the artifacts housed at the curation facility at Anza-Borrego.
The volunteers meet at the Begole Archaeological Research Center and travel over an hour to arrive at the Museum and work from 9:30am – 4pm on alternating Thursdays. Some of these volunteers have become invested in the work we do here and have started coming weekly.
With their extra hands on the project our volunteer artifact curation skyrocketed from 230 artifacts to 1,366. Getting the collections into museum quality storage is the number one priority of the museum and the volunteers’ efforts to support this cause cannot be understated.
It started simple: finish putting the binders in order and we’ll head down to the cruise center. I’ve created an archives monster. We had to take pictures of his work. Then he got the opportunity to show off to one of the students who stopped by to reserve computer time.
It seems he’s changed his opinion that archives are just old junk. Well, maybe it hasn’t gone that far, but he has decided that it’s fun old junk. It makes me laugh that he enjoys labeling folders. He’s a natural at what is possibly the most hated job in archives internships (after removing staples). It’s also slightly aggravating that a 13-year-old volunteer is executing with precision a job I had to pay tuition to get a shot at (but that’s another story). Let’s just say that Tuvol gets mad at me if I label folders without him – that’s his “department”, as he says when he explains the archives process.