NEW ULM - The Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF) has awarded $1,250 worth of free paint to a project in Brown County, through its Picture-It Painted grant program.
The Brown County Historical Society was awarded 50 gallons for the museum and historical research center, for the 150th commemoration of the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862.
Museum Director Bob Burgess said the paint would be used to repaint the historic facilities, ensuring the museum "looks its best" in time for the opening of a major new third-floor exhibit, while also getting as much as possible accomplished in time for the onset of the vacation season.
The facilities will be repainted in colors to match the original 1910 paint, said Burgess.
The project is part of overall efforts to maintain the museum in good condition, added Burgess.
Three floors of the museum house exhibits which attract 7,000 visitors each year.
The official opening date for the new exhibit, focused on the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862, is Aug. 21.
The project will be completed by volunteers and staff, moving artifacts and furniture around in phases, as time allows and at every opportunity.
It's about an acre-worth of paint, noted Burgess. "I don't think we've painted so much at once in a long time," he added.
In addition to wall paint, the museum received floor and railing paint.
The Picture-It Painted program is a partnership between SMIF and Valspar Corporation in support of community beautification and restoration projects in southern Minnesota.
"The Picture-it-Painted program reminds us that collaboration shapes and improves our communities. This project involves a number of volunteers and will provide New Ulm with an asset they can enjoy for years to come," said Tim Penny, SMIF President & CEO. "We are pleased to support projects that will improve the look of our region."
The Brown County effort is one of 17 projects awarded free paint in southern Minnesota, valued at $18,125. This year more than 720 gallons were awarded to these beautification projects in southern Minnesota. The grant is awarded to projects that will have a visual impact, provide a public benefit to the community and involve volunteer participation.