Dialogue Blog: Fun in (and out of) the sun

by Katy Creagh, Arts & Culture Program Developer, and Eric Todd, Gallery Program Manager

Eric: Katy, correct me if I’m wrong, but I’m guessing when you were growing up, you were excited for the fun summer offered, but also kind of bummed about school coming to an end.

Katy: Now Eric, just because I enjoy learning doesn’t mean I don’t like to have fun in the summer. I still love to go to the pool or lake, read all day and have barbeques. And, I hate to point this out, but between the two of us, aren’t you the professional student?

Eric: If by “professional” you mean the top in my field, guilty as charged. That’s why I like working at the museum; you can be a professional and a student — I learn something new every day.

Katy: And there does seem to be a lot of things going on at the museum this summer.

Eric: I agree. As you know, I got my start here as a summer camp intern. Camps alone keep the museum pretty busy.

Katy: I know, we are knee deep in camp season. We have three camps down, one in progress, three left to go. My camp, Indiana Artists Camp, was the first one, and I thought it went pretty well, if I do say so myself.

Katy and Eric creating some art!

Eric: I’ll say it for you — the watercolors, birdhouses and pottery I saw from your campers were all really cool — and I was jealous when I saw you guys doing art in nature, it looked like a lot of fun. Frankly, I’ve been very impressed by what I’ve seen in all the camps this year. 

Katy: I’m glad to hear that, but I noticed you’re not on the camp schedule this year — that’s a first! Care to share what you are doing with all your time?

Eric: Sure. I’m heading up the museum’s new gallery host program. ‘Eric, does that mean you’ll be taking your intoxicating personality out onto the museum floor to share with visitors,’ you ask?

Katy: Okay …

Eric: Actually, it does, Katy. I’m part of a team of Gallery Program Specialists that will be in the museum galleries every day to answer questions, share insights about the objects on display and facilitate some fun activities along the way.

Katy: You know, you aren’t the only one who is busy with activities this summer. I’ve developed some art activities that take place in White River State Park this summer.

Eric: I know, and I’ll be honest, I’m pretty excited. You taught me a lot about art back in February, so I am excited to test my newfound skills and knowledge on these weekends.

Katy: We’ve got different activities planned for each of the Yes Games weekends. This coming Saturday, on June 30, we are using recycled plastic to create a mobile. We’ll be on the front lawn July 21, Aug. 11 and, of course, for the White River Festival on Sept. 1.

Eric: That sounds like a great kick off for the White River Festival that’s taking place the whole month of September. I heard there are going to be activities around all of White River State Park that day.

Katy: Now we’ve been spending most of our time shamelessly plugging our own programs, I feel like there is something else this summer that we are missing.

Eric: Right you are. Summer Sounds is ongoing, and it’s a really fun program. There are two dates left — July 18 and Aug. 15 — with a couple of great acts. It’s really a great way to unwind and enjoy yourself after a day of work.

Katy: I know, I’ve been to one of the concerts and really enjoyed it. Sitting on the canal, enjoying the music and one of the most iconic views of downtown Indianapolis … it’s a nice date night.

Eric: Speaking of ‘dates,’ I’d recommend adding all of the dates we discussed to your calendar — there is a lot of fun … and learning … to be had this summer in and around the museum.

Katy: Okay … that was a bit lame, is that really how you want to finish this?

Volunteers from near and far

Written by Karine Huys, Coordinator of Volunteer Services

The Indiana State Museum recruits volunteers of all age ranges, skill levels and interests. But I decided this afternoon that I wanted to see how far reaching our recruitment was geographically. So I sat down at my computer, opened our volunteer database and pulled up the mailing addresses of all the current volunteers and interns. After some extensive sorting in Excel, map questing and rounding to the nearest whole number, I have a very impressive list. And here it is in Top 10 style …

10.       Anne from Danville at 22 miles
9.         Karen and Vic from Franklin at 23 miles
8.         David and Sue from Greenfield at 26 miles
7.         April from Franklin tied with Lilly from Lafayette at 30 miles
6.         Julie from Jamestown at 31 miles
5.         Linda from Coatesville at 33 miles
4.         Alice and Bob from Knightstown at 39 miles
3.         Carolyn from New Ross at 40 miles
2.         Nell from Columbus at 56 miles
And our farthest traveling volunteer at 59 miles — Karen from New Richmond!

Since I figured out who the farthest traveling volunteer was, I also decided to see who was the closest. It was close —no pun intended — and we have several people who walk to the museum for their shifts, but Barry is officially the closest at .53 miles. Our runner up, Carol, was only about one tenth of a mile farther.

While the Indiana State Museum sits in the heart of White River State Park in downtown Indianapolis, our volunteers are coming to us from miles and blocks away! If you are interested in learning more about volunteering, contact the volunteer center at 317.234.2449 or see the volunteer page on the museum’s website.

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