EXPANSION TO INCLUDE FREE PROGRAMMING TO STUDENTS
The Adirondack Experience is an important provider of curriculum enhancement programming for students attending schools in the Adirondack Park. We are located in the center of the Park— a region with portions of twelve counties within its boundaries. The student population in the region faces significant challenges; for instance, ongoing school budget cuts, which underscore the importance of the Adirondack Experience’s services. Our K-12 programs align with the national Common Core State Standards initiative, which are designed to increase students’ skills such as: critical thinking; reading for understanding and decision making; and writing and persuasive speaking. School age children in the Adirondack Park deserve the opportunity to learn and explore the rich history and culture of the region. The Adirondack Experience is fulfilling a critical need to an underserved population— rural school children. Our K-12 programs enhance student performance, preparing them for the future. Support for the expansion to offer educational programs free of charge to regional schools is an investment in the next generation of citizens.
A NEW DIRECTION FOR COLLECTIONS
Working with Williamstown Art Conservation Center (WACC), the museum will thoroughly access its collections and develop the first long-range conservation plan in its history. The plan will identify issues regarding: storage space; climate control; conservation needs; and staffing. It will lay the groundwork for raising funds to address the collections’ conservation requirements in the years ahead. WACC will provide conservators to work on this important project.
EXPAND THE REACH OF COLLECTIONS
The Adirondack Experience is the repository for the most comprehensive collection of historical artifacts that tell the story of the people and culture of the Adirondack region. Our institution has existing electronic records for approximately 95,000 items in its collection. These records are currently available only for internal inventory and research purposes. We seek to ultimately make all of those records directly accessible online for anybody to access. As a pilot project, the Adirondack Experience will make available online 30,000 electronic records that include artifact images as well as descriptive data. In the future, as our remaining 65,000 records are augmented with digital images, they, too, will be made accessible online.
MAKE THE ADIRONDACKS ACCESSIBLE TO RESEARCHERS WORLDWIDE
The Adirondack Experience’s library houses, preserves, and makes accessible to the public an extraordinary, and unparalleled, collection of books, manuscripts, maps, and ephemera that documents Adirondack history. Currently, records exist for about one-third of the library’s cataloged materials making those 4,205 records available online. We plan to create records for approximately 8,000 additional items in its collections and place those records online, as well, so as to make the entire collection accessible to researchers worldwide. Creating the 8,000 new records will involve a variety of methodologies.
BRING THE PAST INTO THE PRESENT
The Adirondack Experience IT infrastructure is aging. A number of the servers are past their prime as are many of the staff workstations. Modernizing back office IT capabilities will lay the groundwork for incorporating more sophisticated hardware and software in our galleries in the future as progress is made towards implementing the Exhibition Master Plan.