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Above and Beyond Children’s Museum’s Grand Reopening Celebration

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The Above and Beyond Children’s Museum in Sheboygan, Wisconsin is set to reopen on March 7, 2023, after being closed for two months due to $150,000 in damages caused by water pipes bursting on Christmas Day in 2022. The closure was devastating for the museum’s executive director, Jackie Erdman, who stated that the most challenging part was not being able to serve families and children through a safe, clean, indoor space, especially during the winter.

Knowing we were unable to serve families and children through a safe, clean, indoor space that is so beloved has been the most difficult part of all of this. Especially in the winter time. One of the biggest silver linings is that we have been able to assess the museum top to bottom to make our space as efficient and safe as possible moving forward. Jackie Erdman, Above and Beyond’s Executive Director

Despite the closure, officials from the museum praised fundraising efforts throughout the community, including an event hosted by 3 Sheeps Brewing Company in late January. However, the museum still sought donations to recover lost revenue from admissions during the closure.

During the restoration process, the museum added new highlights, including new pieces in the Calming Corner, introduction of Sensory Seekers Backpacks for neurodiverse children and individuals, new paint for the Glow Room, and updated public restrooms with new fixtures donated by Kohler Co. In addition, the museum added higher spiral staircase railings and slip-resistant spiral stair covers for additional safety measures. The back stairwell now features wall décor of individual hand-painted tiles created by the community.

Erdman also stated that volunteers are still desperately needed as the museum prepares for its reopening.

“We wish to extend deep gratitude to the community partners, organizations, businesses, and volunteers who have offered their support and assistance as the team navigates this situation,” added Erdman.

The museum’s Grand Reopening Celebration will be hosted on March 12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., including a celebratory balloon drop and special activities and crafts. Although the museum has reached its insurance coverage for repairs, it is still continuing fundraising efforts to raise $20,000 to reach its original goal of $100,000.

The Above and Beyond Children’s Museum is a valuable resource for families in the Sheboygan community, providing educational and interactive exhibits for children to learn and explore. The closure was undoubtedly challenging for both the museum and the families who depend on it, but the reopening brings hope and excitement for future opportunities to engage and learn. The efforts from the community to support the museum showcase the importance of investing in local organizations that serve and enrich the lives of children and families.

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