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Exhibits & Historical Groups for Willmar, Minn., region

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showcase Willmar,Minnesota 56201
West Central Tribune
Exhibits & Historical Groups for Willmar, Minn., region
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

Potato Eaters Gallery

Willmar, Saturday, 10 a.m. to noon, Potato Eaters Gallery, 330 Litchfield, Ave.; Bill Bjostad Talks Art group discussion of Metropolitan Museum of Art seminars of "The Quick and the dead."


Atwater State Bank

Atwater, through mid-July, during bank hours; works by Fred Cogelow.


Willmar, through July, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays and when building is open for events, WEAC; original paintings by Pearl Ziegenhagen from Clements; artist reception 4 to 6 p.m. today.

Bremness Gallery

Glenwood, through July 30, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday through Saturday or by appointment; on the grounds of the Ann Bickle Heritage House, 226 E. Minnesota Ave.; "What a Wonderful World," photographs by Kelly Welch and Theresa Peper.

Three Sisters Furnishings

New London, through August, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday; Three Sisters Furnishings, 2550 State Highway 9 N.E.; in-store art gallery featuring chalk pastels in an abstract style by Andrew Champlin from Hawick; artist reception 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday.

North American Financial Center

Willmar, through Aug. 31, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays; "Summer Fun in Kandiyohi County" display by the Kandiyohi County Historical Society and a Larson Falls Flyer boat from the Mikkelson Museum.


Willmar, through Sept. 29, downtown Willmar; 19 wooden mugs are on display throughout downtown Willmar. They were decorated by area artists and sponsored by the Willmar Area Arts Council and the Willmar Design Center. They will be sold at an auction on Sept. 29.

Museums &

historic sites

Kandiyohi County Historical Society

Willmar, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, 1 to 5 p.m. Sundays; free admission, located at the train engine on North Business Highway 71 across from Robbins Island; the KCHS museum has a number of featured exhibits and the Sperry House will be open by request, stop or call the museum to set up a tour; 320-235-1881.

Guri Endreson site

The Guri Endreson site, located on County Road 5, will be open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends, Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend. Call the Historical Society to arrange a tour.


Civil War Veterans of Kandiyohi County: Display of information on over 200 Civic War veterans that lived in Kandiyohi County. New photos, information or artifacts on the soldiers is always welcome.

Surviving through Time: The story of pioneer Guri Endreson's struggles with life and happenings during the U.S. Dakota Conflict of 1862. It also features the story of the Endreson Cabin on Solomon Lake.

Old, Old Story: Different varieties of Bibles from many different nationalities.

Immigration: To celebrate the diverse ancestry and heritage of Kandiyohi County and the state of Minnesota. The immigration exhibit features one of four original Red River Ox Carts left in the state of Minnesota along with pictures of traditional costumes of peoples who settled this region during the 19th century. A map of ethnic communities in the late 1800s and early 1900s shows our county's "old" ethnic neighborhoods, with an immigrant truck and artifacts brought from the Old Countries.

Kandi Resorts: As Minnesota is the "Land of 10,000 Lakes" and Kandiyohi County is "Where the Lakes Begin," KCHS is honoring the lake-based economy in an exhibit dedicated to early resorts and the lakes. The exhibit features bathing suits, fishing gear, resort pictures and brochures.

Something's Afoot: Photographs, shoe store fixtures and shoes from the 1870s to the 1970s.

Beautiful buildings: Photographs, history and a few leftover "pieces" tell the stories of several buildings that were razed in Willmar and missed by residents who remember them.

Velma's Hats: Hats from the collection of Velma Swanson, from the 1940s to '70s, along with a special Red Hat Society-style number made by Sharon Richmond along with photographs and accessories.

Last run of 2523: The year 2010 marked the 45th anniversary of the "last run" of Great Northern engine 2523 to the historical center.

No! No! is an eclectic display of museum objects that were or are considered immoral or shocking. Confiscated liquor bottles from the Prohibition era, century-old "racy" stereopticon views, spittoons, and other tobacco items are some of the obviously "sinful" pieces in the exhibit. Other features remind viewers that currently acceptable practices such as Sunday shopping or trends like bobbed hair or jazz music were formerly considered "No, No's."

Collectible stamp sets: Elmond Ekblad displays his stamp collection, with stamps for each season.

Civil, Spanish-America and the World Wars: Military items, photos of local veterans, and lists of local GAR veterans.

Buggy-riding: Judge Muller's buggy is the focal point of this exhibit. It is flanked by photos of buggies and equipment used with horse-drawn vehicles.

Newspapers: Interpretive panels telling the history of the press in America have been added to the old printing press and Linotype exhibit.

Halvorson inventions: A generator and carburetor invented by Lars Halvorson of Willmar, who also built the first gas-powered "horseless carriage" in the area, are displayed with the museum's early automobiles.

Willmar 8: Letters, newspapers, photos and scrapbooks tell the history of the Willmar 8 strike.

Atwater Area Museum

Atwater, open by appointment, call 320-212-2702 the Atwater Area Historical Society and Museum.

Chippewa County Historical Society

The Chippewa County Historical Society has several sites that will be open for the summer. Admission prices vary. For more information or to make appointments call 320-269-7636.

Chippewa County Historical Society

The Chippewa County Historical Society will have several sites open for the summer. Admission prices vary. For more information or to make appointments call 320-269-7636.

Chippewa City: through Sept. 5; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, 1 to 5 p.m. weekends and holidays; junction of state Highway 7 and U.S. Highway 59 in Montevideo; re-creation of a turn-of-the-century town with 23 buildings. Admission adults $4, students $2, and 5 and under will be admitted free.

Olof Swensson Farm Museum: 1 to 5 p.m. Sundays through Sept. 4, or by appointment; six miles east of Montevideo on state Highway 7, then five miles south on County Road 15. The 17-acre farmstead features a 22-room house, timber frame barn and the remains of a gristmill. Admission adults $4, students $2, 5 and under will be admitted free.

Lac qui Parle Mission: open daily through Labor Day, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.; six miles north of Montevideo on U.S. Highway 59 and 2.2 miles west on County Road 13; free admission.

Mission Sunday: 54th annual event on Sunday at the Lac qui Parle Mission beginning with 10:30 a.m. worship led by Rev. Enright Big Horn with special music by the Dakota Choir. Potluck lunch at noon, bring a dish to pass, serving and eating utensils, napkins and plates. Coffee and juice provided. The 1 p.m. program will be "Thomas Williamson and Gideon Pond Return to Lac qui Parle." Jeff Williamson and Jay Ludwig will focus on their lives, including their time at the Lac qui Parle and other missions. There will be a discussion on three letters Gideon sent to Thomas just after the U.S./Dakota Conflict of 1862. The Lac qui Parle Mission is a Minnesota Historical Society historic site operated by the Chippewa County Historical Society.

Danube Historical

Society Museum

The Danube Historical Society Museum is open from 1 to 4:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays in the former Danube Depot Building or by appointment, call 320-826-2274.

GAR and Meeker

County Museum

Litchfield, noon to 4 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday, $2 admission; Grand Army of the Republic Hall and Meeker County Historical Society Museum, 308 Marshall Ave.

Grove City Historical

Grove City, open 1 to 4 p.m. Saturdays or by appointment, call Dorothy 857-9422, 205 Third Street South, Grove City Area Historical Society Museum. The GCHS meets at 1 p.m. the fourth Thursday of each month

Mikkelson Classic Boats

Willmar, open by appointment, call 320-231-0384, 418 Benson Ave. S.E.; featuring classic speed boats, outboard motors, toy boats and motors and boating artifacts; $6 admission.

Monongalia Historical

New London, 1 to 4 p.m. Thursday through Sunday, through Labor Day, old Lebanon Church, Norwood St. N.W.; a historical museum with exhibits, vintage clothing, military display, paintings and photographs and library for genealogy research.

Norway Lake Log Church

New London, 7:15 p.m. Saturdays through Aug. 13, with a vespers service followed by social hour, west of New London off County Road 40 on 99th St. N.W. or by appointment, call 320-231-2519.

Pope County Museum

Glenwood, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 809 South Lakeshore Drive; admission charged.

Paynesville Area Historical Museum

Paynesville, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday and Friday, 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, through Labor Day, 251 Ampe Drive; freewill donation; allow one hour or more for guided tour.

Raptor Ridge

New London, open by appointment, call 320-354-8820, 12050 Co. Rd. 40 N.E. Larry and Barb Levin's natural history museum includes collections of butterflies, seashells, rocks, minerals, Indian artifacts and dinosaur bones. The museum is located on County Road 40, 2.8 miles east of state Highway 23 on the north side of the road. Admission is free.

Renville City Museum

Renville, 1 to 4 p.m. Fridays or by appointment, Main Street; 320-329-8210.

Sacred Heart

Area Museum

Sacred Heart, 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays or by appointment, U.S. Highway 212 in Sacred Heart; 320-765-8868; email

Schwanke's Museum

Willmar, 1 to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday, or by appointment, 3310 Business Highway 71 S.; features roadway and farm field history, more than 300 tractors, cars, trucks and fire trucks; gift shop; adults $5, under 12 are $2; 320-231-0564.

Exhibit information will be printed each Thursday in this calendar. The deadline is noon Monday.

Items may be submitted on the Tribune Web site at; faxed to 320-235-6769; mailed to Arts Calendar, P.O. Box 839, Willmar, MN 56201 or e-mailed to with "arts calendar item" in the subject line.