Harkins, Merski: More than $23,000 awarded to fund historical societies, children’s museum

ERIE, Dec. 8 – The Erie County Historical Society, expERIEnce Children’s Museum, and Harborcreek Historical Society have been awarded more than $23,000 in state funding to help support their operations, state Reps. Pat Harkins and Bob Merski, both D-Erie, announced today.

The lawmakers said that funding from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission includes $12,003 to the Erie County Historical Society and $6,067 to the children’s museum under the Cultural and Historical Support Grant Program and $5,000 to the Harborcreek society under the Historical and Archival Records Grant Program.

“Erie’s historical societies are the keepers of our region’s rich cultural heritage, and this new funding will support staff at the county historical society and Harborcreek in their efforts to preserve and chronicle our history in a way that keeps it alive for future generations.”

Merski said, “The expERIEnce Children’s Museum is another unique place that brings learning to life by allowing kids to interact with hands-on displays and exhibits that stimulate the senses. The new grant funding to help support operations follows last week’s award of $5 million from the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program for major expansions and improvements to the museum.”

The funding is part of a package of nearly $2 million in grants awarded to 154 museums and county historical societies statewide under the Cultural and Historical Support Grant Program and more than $175,000 awarded to 34 organizations statewide under the Historical and Archival Records Care Program.

An eligible museum must have an annual operating budget exceeding $100,000 (excluding capital and in-kind services) and at least one full-time professional staff person (or approved equivalent).

More about the grants is available here.