By TERRY KONKLE
As many people know, the Rockford Area Historical Society believes that the preservation and presentation of our history is important. A major goal of the group is to help fund a museum to display our history and to educate all ages as to what has happened in our area over the years. Right now our society, with the help of others, is working to create a major change for our area. We need lots of help from people, organizations and businesses to make a positive impact on our history.
Members of the Rockford Area Historical Society along with many other people in our community continue to work toward moving the Rockford Area Museum (RAM) from its present location to the vacant portion of the Rockford District Court building. Fundraising has been going on for about three months, and we have received many pledges and money toward the project. We have also had offers of help with the cost of construction from several businesses. As of December 1, 2011 we have commitments for close to $120,000. This is about one third of what we projected to the city of Rockford ($340,000) to be needed to finance the move. Because of the offers of in kind help, the total cost should be lower than the $340,000.
Fundraising brochures, which explain our project and show how to pledge or donate, are available at many local businesses including the Rockford Squire, Herman’s Boy and Antor Travel and by contacting the society (Terry Konkle 616-866-0530). It has been brought to our attention that the partial Michigan tax credit for donations to groups like a museum will NOT be tax deducible in Michigan after this year, so donors should be aware of it when making donations (make them before the end of the year). The Rockford Area Historical Society and the Rockford Area Community Endowment are both 501 (c) (3) non profit organizations.
The society has a fundraising event planned for Saturday, February 18, 2012 when Mark Randisi will bring his outstanding Frank Sinatra show,”THE SOUND OF SINATRA” to the Rockford High School Fine Arts Auditorium. Publicity and ticket sales information is in place and tickets are already being sold on line at www.ramshow2012.com and at the following area locations: Antor Travel-Northland Drive and12 Mile, Double Take-Rockford, Rockford Squire-Rockford, Creative Concepts-Rockford, Dish Network-Plainfield south of 5 Mile, Rockford Ambulance-10 Mile and Shaner, Courtland Township Offices and Algoma Township Offices. Posters and other handout material on the show are being placed in many businesses all over the area at the present time.
Another fundraiser that the society is working on is an auction sometime in the spring of 2012. The details are being worked on, but anyone who may have something that we can auction whether it be an item or something else can contact the society (Terry Konkle 866-0530).
In the last couple of months, several people have given things to the society and told us to sell them and put the profits toward our museum funds. We appreciate the donations and encourage others to contact us with items like this. We are and will definitely continue to sell/auction some of these on line.
Please step up and help us and share in the pride we feel because we are going to have a new museum!