Let’s Develop Our Research Center
Steven K. Rogstad
Director of Development
As we approach the holiday season, we are reminded once more that this is the time of the year that is based upon the principle of giving. We enjoy giving presents to our friends and family – watching their faces light up when they see that special gift that was selected just for them. It is also that time of year when we receive another opportunity to acknowledge the valuable work the Research Center is engaged in to preserve and teach regional history.
This year has been filled with both familiar and new programs that support the mission of the Center. There has been the nine months of our standard Second Saturdays and History on the Move. There has been the regular offering of genealogy classes to help people hone their research skills. We completed the 7th year of the Center’s annual Lincoln Seminar.
However, we have also introduced a few new programs that have been very well received. We offered three sessions of Taproom History at The Fat Cow in Sheboygan Falls. Around 60 people attended each session to learn about some edgy and unusual history subject. There was a bus trip to Kentucky and Indiana to visit sites associated with the life of Abraham Lincoln. In October, we saw sizeable audiences attend a German Genealogy Seminar and a Black Hawk War Symposium. The Symposium drew attendees from three states, some coming as far away as western Iowa! We anticipate the Symposium becoming an annual event. The Center will be publishing the papers delivered at the annual Symposium as part of the experience, and as a way to contribute to the literature on the subjects under discussion.
There has also been our introduction into the use of mass media. We share stories about local history on a weekly radio segment, “History and You,” which airs Monday mornings around 8:10 am on WKLN. You can also listen to these stories on the Center’s website at www.schrc.org. We are now in the planning stages for using videos and podcasts as a way to spread the word about the Center to larger and broader audiences.
Of course, all of our exciting programs and initiatives – not to mention the collections care and management activities we are engaged in on a daily basis – come with a price. To meet costs, plan for the future, and keep the Center sustainable, the organization will be implementing three new fundraising activities between now and the end of the year: (1) a “Giving Tuesday” Facebook event on December 3, (2) an End-of-the-Year Campaign, November 18 – December 31, and (3) a “Go Fund Me” Campaign, November 18- February 29, 2020. Each of these campaigns will seek to raise funds for different projects associated with the Center.
These campaigns provide an excellent opportunity for year-end giving. Perhaps you have not yet contributed to the 2019 Annual Campaign. There is still time! As you celebrate this season of benevolence, please keep the Center in mind. Our good friend Justin Lorenz has once again agreed to sponsor Taproom History for 2020! Our long-time supporter and benevolent donor Jay Christopher of Christopher Farm & Gardens is sponsoring the newsletter for the third year! There are numerous ways members can sponsor and support events and new special projects. I hope you will consider sponsoring an event. The time is NOW to act, so that your financial gift can achieve its benefit prior to December 31.
Please feel free to contact me with your ideas, suggestions, and recommendations for enhancing our development efforts. You can contact me at 920-467-4667, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for all you do to support and help develop our Research Center!
Have a great holiday season!
Past Development Columns