Keep an eye on our calendar to learn about upcoming events and classes at the Willamette Heritage Center.
Nature and Community: Heritage Invitational Exhibit
Fri. January 20, 2017 – Sat. May 15, 2017
The Mid-Willamette Valley possesses myriad complex ecological systems and natural characteristics. Water, soil, forests, wildlife and minerals have shaped the economies, settlement patterns, leisure activities, and identities of the communities in the region. Humans in the valley have also been shaping the natural landscape to meet their needs and ideals since time immemorial. Native agriculture and burning practices sculpted the valley’s iconic oak savanna, power development and flood controls in our cities have dammed and shaped our waterways, and the current trend in urbanization is transforming agricultural regions into cityscapes. This exhibit and subsequent programming will look at the relationship between humans and their natural environment in the Mid-Willamette Valley.
This exhibit is included in regular admission to the Willamette Heritage Center. It is free for WHC Members and members of participating organizations.
Urban Homesteaders: The Basic Blacksmith
Saturday, March 25th | 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Our first Basic Blacksmith class is a demonstration and lecture on the tricks and tools needed to work with coal. Experienced instructor Richard Staats will use our historic forge to show how a blacksmith manages this unusuel fuel. Our Basic Blacksmith courses are great for the curious, the beginner, or blacksmiths interested in traditional skills and materials.
Urban Homesteader workshops cost $45 for WHC members, $50 for non-members, and $40 when registering for three or more classes at one time.
Preregistration is required for this class. Visit willametteheritage.org/classes-workshops/ to sign up.
Spring Break Family Fun Pass at the Willamette Heritage Center
Looking for a fun and affordable spring break activity for your family? Look no further! From March 27th through April 1st, we’re offering admission passes for up to two adults and three children for just $15, saving you almost 50%! There’s no need to pre-purchase the pass; just ask for the family admission deal at our front desk, and enjoy your dive into the Mid-Willamette Valley’s history.
Our spring break is packed with fun. With your family pass, you can enjoy our Museum After Hours event on Monday, March 27th from 5:30 to 8:30 pm. We’ll also have three drop-in activities running on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, teaching children about wind, water and wool in fun and memorable ways. Grab a “Spring Break Passport to Fun” (free courtesy of the Oregon State Capital) and search for Shaun the Shorn sheep’s box on the grounds. Docents will be on site most days to provide fun and educational tours to your family, bringing history to life.
Learn more about our Spring Break activities at www.willametteheritage.org/spring-break-fun/.
Museum After Hours
Monday, March 27th • 5:30 to 8:30 pm
Be honest, when was the last time you went to a museum in Salem? We hear it all the time: “I drive by everyday, but I’ve never been there.” Now is your chance! Join us Monday, March 27th for a special extended-hours event. Explore the site designated by the National Parks Service as an American Treasure and find out why this place is so beloved by all who come here.
Visitors can tour the Thomas Kay Woolen Mill, a Victorian-era factory and see where one-fifth of Salem’s non-farming population once worked. Take a stroll through the Jason Lee House, the oldest timberframe structure still standing in the Pacific Northwest.
Think you know your history? Take on the “What Is It” challenge scavenger hunt. Participants will locate and identify the use of various mysterious historical tools and equipment on site. Challengers can enter to win exciting prizes.
Have a family heirloom or antique you want to learn more about? Museum staff will be on hand to help. Enter the “What Is It Roulette.” For a $5 fee, staff will inspect your item and provide as many clues to its origin, age and function as possible. We can’t guarantee we will be able to help (hence the roulette), but we have seen a lot of old stuff and it is nice to have a second pair of eyes when researching materials. All proceeds will go toward supporting the educational programs and preservation mission of the Willamette Heritage Center.
Regular museum admission will be charged; $8 for adults, $7 seniors (65+), $6 students, $5 for youth (6-17) and free for children 5 and under.
Become a Willamette Heritage Center member for free admission to Museum After Hours, and unlimited free admission during regular hours. You’ll also get free tickets to Magic at the Mill, special exhibit openings, and more!
“Wind” Spring Break Drop-in Activity
Tuesday, March 28th, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
Explore things with wings! In this activity, kids will learn how wind gives flight to things like planes, helicopters, and other objects by building some of their very own. Test trials will be held to see which inventions fly the best. We’ll provide plenty of creative supplies for your young engineers and artists to make their inventions.
“Wind” is part 1 of our “Wind, Water, Wool” series of spring break drop-in activities. Each activity is available on the grounds from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, and costs $3 for WHC members, or $5 for non-members. Stay for a few minutes or a few hours; the choice is yours! Learn more about our Spring Break deals and activities at www.willametteheritage.org/spring-break-fun/.
“Water” Spring Break Drop-in Activity
Wednesday, March 29th, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
Did you know the Thomas Kay Woolen Mill was once powered by water? Large turbines were propelled by the millrace, generating electricity to power the mill. In this activity, kids will learn how this is possible, and how to be good stewards of this resource to protect it for future generations.
“Water” is part 2 of our “Wind, Water, Wool” series of spring break drop-in activities. Each activity is available on the grounds from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, and costs $3 for WHC members, or $5 for non-members. Stay for a few minutes or a few hours; the choice is yours! Learn more about our Spring Break deals and activities at www.willametteheritage.org/spring-break-fun/.
“Wool” Spring Break Drop-in Activity
Thursday, March 30th, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
Sheep, llamas, alpacas, rabbits – what do all of these have in common? WOOL! In this activity, kids will learn where wool comes from and how we can use it to make creative things. Each child will head home with some fun and useful crafts, and a new appreciation for the enjoyment of textile arts.
“Wool” is part 3 of our “Wind, Water, Wool” series of spring break drop-in activities. Each activity is available on the grounds from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, and costs $3 for WHC members and $5 for non-members. Stay for a few minutes or a few hours; the choice is yours! Learn more about our Spring Break deals and activities at www.willametteheritage.org/spring-break-fun/.
The WHC is proud to host the 25th Annual Heritage Awards, which recognize and honor our community’s leaders and organizations who have contributed significantly to the preservation and interpretation of our heritage. The celebration includes a cocktail hour, dinner, a special program for the enjoyment of history enthusiasts and all lovers of the past and the stories we tell about it.
This year’s program, Headlining History, features the work of Gerry Lewin, a renowned photojournalist who served the Salem community for decades while working for the Capital Journal and the Statesman Journal. The evening will include a presentation by Lewin following the conclusion of the awards.
Tickets will be available beginning March 1st. Nominations are open through February 28th. Visit willametteheritage.org/heritage-awards/ to learn more, submit nominations, and purchase tickets!
Fleece to Fiber: Soft Leather & Beading
Saturday, April 15th | 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
With a respectful nod to the earliest Native American settlers in our valley, this class will explore the tradition of working with and decorating soft leather. Project choices will include leather cuff/bracelet, small pouch, or book cover.
Fleece to Fiber classes are held at the Willamette Heritage Center and combine the rich historical setting, collections, and textile equipment of our museum with quality instruction in primitive textile craft skills. Class cost is $25 and for kids only (age 10 and up). Class size is limited to 10 students and require 4 students to carry. To register, visit www.willametteheritage.org/classes-workshops/, or contact Kaylyn at (503) 585-7012 ext. 257.
Bees and Other Bugs: Inviting Pollinators Into Your Garden
Saturday, April 15th, 2017 • 11:00 am to 2:00 pm
Instructor: Mona Kanner
Bees and other pollinators are vital to the health of any garden, but their populations are declining at an alarming rate! In this Urban Homesteaders class, taught by Mona Kanner, students will learn which flowering plants attract pollinators, how to ensure bees are already there when your vegetables and flowering plants blossom, and how to promote healthy native bee and honey bee populations. Students will also leave with a solid understanding of whether bee keeping may or may not be of interest to them.
Preregistration is required for this class by Wednesday, April 12th at 5:00 pm. Visit willametteheritage.org/classes-workshops/ to sign up!
All Willamette Heritage Center Urban Homesteaders classes cost $45 for members, $50 for non-members, and $40 when registering for three or more classes at once. Questions? Give us a call at (503)585-7012 and we are happy to help!