Rotary Museum

Museums of Historic Hopkinsville Christian County Executive Director Alissa Keller speaks to the Rotary Club of Hopkinsville on Tuesday about the Pennyroyal Area Museum’s grand reopening Feb. 27.

Heritage and legacy. Those are some of the main tenets of the two-year remodeling project that the Pennyroyal Area Museum will soon finish.

Museums of Historic Hopkinsville Christian County Executive Director Alissa Keller was on hand Tuesday at the Rotary Club of Hopkinsville meeting to show off the project.

“I have been talking about this project for two years now,” Keller said. “Maybe longer.”

The building needed a number of upgrades just to get up to code, Keller said. When Keller’s team asked residents what they believed should be changed during the renovation, one of the biggest complaints was that it had been too dark inside the museum.

So, Keller said, they flipped the colors when repainting the building. The lower portion of the walls were a light gray but have now been painted light tan. The black, upper portion of the walls have been painted bright white.

The windows also needed attention. Keller said the windows in poor condition were sent to a window specialist in Lexington to be rebuilt. Some of the windows were original, while others were 50 years old.

“Surprisingly, the 100-year-old windows were in better shape than the 50-year-old windows,” she said. “Those had to be completely redone.”

When the project began, the architects weren’t planning on putting on a new roof. But as the contractor began to dig in to the original copper roof, it was clear that a full replacement was necessary.

“Copper roofs last about 60 to 80 years, and this one was 105,” Keller said. “There was just not much we could do.”

The new green roof follows the same curves as the original roof to keep up with the building’s heritage, a detail Keller said she fought hard for.

“As far as I know, that roof has leaked forever,” she said. “And it’s not leaking right now, so we’re real proud of that.”

To see what exhibits the museum has in store, Keller said residents should come to the grand opening.

Flutter and Wow Museum Projects designed and built the new exhibits in its Ann Arbor, Michigan, warehouse. This week, seven Flutter and Wow Museum Projects employees are setting those exhibits up in preparation for the grand opening in less than a month.

The museum is in the old post office at 217 E. Ninth St. The post office officially opened its doors Feb. 27, 1915.

The museum will also hold its grand opening on Feb. 27, keeping up with the legacy of the building’s original use.

“We’re going to reopen and rededicate her 105 years later,” Keller said.

Residents who want to see the museum early can attend a preview party Feb. 21.

“Your ticket to the preview party is making a donation to our capital campaign,” she said. “And we’d love to have you do that.”

The museum had around a $500,000 goal for its capital campaign and is around 70% funded.

“We’re kind of in this final push right now to take us over the edge,” she said. “And we would appreciate your investment, your contribution and your support.”

To make a contribution to the capital campaign, call the museum at 270-887-4270 or visit museumsofhopkinsville.org/makehistory/.

Reach Jon Russelburg at 270-887-3241 or jrusselburg@kentuckynewera.com

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