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NUAF gives to community projects

Staff photo by Clay Schuldt Members of the New Ulm Area Foundation and Brown County Historical Society examine some of the artifacts going into the new Explorers’ Corner. From left, John Illikman, Mary Ellen Domeier, Pat Herzog, Rick Jensen, Sheri Fischer, Amy Johnson and Kathleen Backer.

NEW ULM — The New Ulm Area Foundation, Inc., (NUAF) made two significant donations Thursday as part of the fall grant cycle.

A $2,000 check was given to the Brown County Historical Society (BCHS) for the Explorers’ Corner display. Another $4,000 was given to New Ulm’s Downtown Action Team to finish resurfacing picnic tables downtown with historic information.

NUAF focuses on four primary pillars: arts, education, economic development and historic preservation. NUAF Executive Director John Illikman said these projects match the goals of the foundation.

BCHS Director Kathleen Backer said the grant they received would be used for the new Explorers’ Corner on the second floor. The new exhibit would focus on the history of buffalo, Native American life, fur trading and pioneer settlers. The target audience for the exhibit is families. Many of the displays will be interactive. Backer said the idea is to be fulfilling and engaging for younger visitors.

The grant to the Downtown Action Team would finish installing historic information on the tabletops along downtown Minnesota Street. New Ulm Area Chamber of Commerce President Michael Looft said the $4,000 should be enough to cover the remaining picnic tables. The Downtown Action Team had planned to surface nine picnic tables on Minnesota Street with historic information from New Ulm’s past. Four tables have already been completed and contain information on New Ulm’s theaters, music, festivals and Brown County Fair. The five remaining tables will have historical information on New Ulm’s ballrooms, breweries, grocery stores, auto dealers and the Lower Sioux Agency.

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