International Museum Day is celebrated Sunday, May 13. In Juneau, this means participating museums and historic sites will offer free admission and special activities from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
At the Alaska State Museum, 395 Whittier Street, May 13 does double duty as opening day for "Quilts of Alaska: A Textile Album of the Last Frontier," an exhibition of historical quilts from across the state, including one from Yakutat pieced with duck necks.
At noon, Steve Henrikson, curator of "Looking Forward, Looking Back: An Alaska State Museum Centennial Exhibition," will give a walking tour of this display which documents the institution's growth over its first century. Artifacts in the collection range from a life-size portrait of Peter the Great from Russian colonial days to battle mementos from the Aleutian Campaign of World War II.
At 1:30 p.m., June Hall, guest curator of the quilt exhibit, will give remarks about the Alaska Quilt Survey and the exhibit it inspired.
At 2 p.m., Merikay Waldvogel, a nationally-known historian from Tennessee, will lead "Quilt Revivals in Alaska," a walking tour of the quilt exhibit.
At 3 p.m., the State Museum will hold a signing for "Quilts of Alaska: A Textile Album of the Last Frontier," the catalog that accompanies the exhibit. Members of the Gastineau Channel Historical Society who helped with the publication will be on hand.
The Juneau-Douglas City Museum will celebrate with the opening of the exhibit, "Dale DeArmond: Artist and Bibliophile." DeArmond, a noted printmaker now retired in Sitka, was librarian in this building well into the 1980s.
At 11:30 a.m., escorted by the Veterans of Foreign Wars Color Guard, community members will present "50 Years of History" at the city museum. "We're celebrating that this building is 50 years old this year and that the museum is 25 years old," said curator Mary Pat Wyatt. The building, known to many as "the old library," was originally constructed as a memorial to the veterans of two world wars, she said. An exhibit accompanies the presentation. Mayor Sally Smith will deliver remarks, as will historical society member Marie Darlin and Judge Tom Stewart.
At 3:30 p.m. at the Juneau-Douglas City Museum, the Alaska Mining Hall of Fame will induct Ben Stewart, Buck Choquette and Mick Silva.
The Last Chance Mining Museum, 1001 Basin Road, gives visitors a chance to perform the Geology Dance at 1 p.m. The dance helps explain mineral deposits. From 1-5 p.m., volunteers will be on hand to answer questions and interpret new displays.
The St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church will also participate in Museum Day. "We have a church service that ends about 12:30 p.m., and then we will be open for tours," said Father Bob Polson.
International Museum Day activities are sponsored by the Friends of the Alaska State Museum, the Gastineau Channel Society, the City and Borough of Juneau and participating museums and historic sites.
A free shuttle service among sites will be provided by the city, and there will be a history treasure hunt for families. For details, call 465-2901.