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Pioneer Museum receives grant

The Alabama Humanities Foundation has awarded 79 CARES Act relief grants in the amount of $507,500 to nonprofits across Alabama that have humanities programming as a significant part of their mission.

“This has been a difficult time for nonprofits throughout our state, and we were proud to play a role in supporting these organizations during the COVID-19 crisis,” said AHF Executive Director Lynn Clark.

The Pioneer Museum of Alabama in Troy is a recipient of a CARES Act relief grant in the amount of $2,500. The grant was awarded through the Alabama Humanities Foundation with funding made possible by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Barbara Tatom, Pioneer Museum of Alabama director, said the grant funds are greatly appreciated and very much needed.

“The Pioneer Museum of Alabama has been closed for 10 weeks,” Tatom said. “During all that time, we have not had any admission fees and have had no sales in the gift shop.

“And the spring is normally a busy time for the museum. It is an ideal time for school groups to visit the museum. It’s also spring break so there is a lot of traffic on Highway 231 that also includes snowbirds who are going back north.”

And, the museum’s Spring Plantin’ event also draws a lot of visitors.

“So, the CARES Act grant funds were a real blessing,” Tatom said.

The funds will be used to purchase operational equipment and to safeguard visitors against COVID-19.

“With the CARES Act grant funds, we will purchase a touchless credit card dock and reader and an iPad that will allow visitors to register electronically rather than signing a guest register,” she said. “We will purchase signage related to COVID-19 including social distancing. We will also purchase extra cleaning supplies and, if we feel it is needed, to have the building cleaned more often. We are making effort so that visitors to the museum will feel safe and comfortable.”

The Pioneer Museum of Alabama will reopen at 9 a.m. today and remain open at its regular hours, from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.

“We are excited to reopen the doors of the Pioneer Museum of Alabama and look forward to having visitors once again,” Tatom said. “We always appreciate local support and invite individuals and families to become members of the Pioneer Museum of Alabama. We have an outstanding museum and fun and learning opportunities for people of all ages throughout the year.”