Things I Miss

June 19th, 2020

By Kerry Lippincott, Executive Director

90 days.  It’s hard to believe that I’ve been running the Historical Society from my apartment for ninety days.  Here are few of my observations.

Working from home is not ideal but doable. The key is flexibility and pivoting.  Thanks to technology, creating two exhibits, holding board and committee meetings, developing or re-purposing digital content, designing a new logo, and transitioning to a new database are just some of the projects we have been able to do.  I’m, however, looking forward to regaining a balance between work and home life.

people sitting in a room

Audience for the “Auburn Road: A History of the Rail Line.”

I also miss my co-workers.  Meeting via Zoom and conference calls cannot replace face to face meetings to say nothing of just our daily interactions. It will be great to have the team together again.

And I miss all of you – our visitors.  One of the reasons I entered the museum field was to share American history with the public.  Though we have been open virtually through our website and social media, it’s just not the same as in-person programs.  Here are just few programs and community events that I have really missed –

  • Spring Lecture Series – Along with learning a thing or two, I thoroughly enjoy sitting in the back of the Hucker Gallery and seeing the audience’s reaction to a speaker.
  • Geneva Read’s Bookfest – One of my favorite community events is Bookfest. It allows me to combine two of my favorite things – American history and books.  Usually I pick a book and craft that connect with one of our exhibits.  In 2017 it was pins and pennants for the centennial for New York State suffrage, in 2018 it was paper poppies for World War I, and last year it was sports themed bookmarks.  My mom is my sidekick for the afternoon and I can’t put into words how much we enjoy helping the kids with their crafts.
  • people standing in hallway at Rose Hill

    Group tour at Rose Hill.

    Taking Tea – In April and May fourth graders come to Rose Hill for Taking Tea. Among my favorite things about this program is seeing 9 and 10 year olds’ interpretations of 19th century clothing.  There tend to be a lot of pilgrims but my all-time favorite was a boy who created knickers by tucking his basketball shorts into knee socks.  Absolutely brilliant!!  The other thing is the smell of 123 cake throughout the Mansion, which I think gives it a real lived-in feel.

  • Seneca7 – This would have been the eighth year that we have manned the Glenora Exchange Point for the race.  In all kinds of weather we have cheered runners on and helped cyclists cross Route 14.  It never fails to amaze me when runners thank us for volunteering as they make their descent down the hill to the actual exchange point.
  • Tuesdays at Rose Hill – From May to October I’m a docent at Rose Hill once a week.   By this time we are typically in the second month of the “season” and I, like the other docents, have “magically” remembered the tour.  Of course, there’s sharing Rose Hill’s stories with visitors. My favorite parts of the tour are the visitors’ reactions when we enter the Main Hall from the back porch and the view of Seneca Lake on sunny day as I let them out the front door.
Women in old-fashioned dress churning butter and mixing batter with chldren.

The Taking Tea school program teaches children about life in the past.

There are still a lot of unknowns (I’m coming to accept that this is part of the new normal).  I do, however, know that the Geneva History Museum and Rose Hill Mansion will reopen and when they do things will be a little different.  As we begin planning our re-opening, we want to hear from you.  Please take a few moments to help us understand how to better serve you and the community.  Click this survey link and let us know how we can create a safe visitor experience.

And I look forward to seeing you soon!

One response to “Things I Miss”

  1. barbara lippincott says:

    I missed Book Fest too! Being a sidekick is great!