June 2, 2013

Locals enjoy free access to local museums

PLATTSBURGH — Museum-goers took advantage of the annual Museum Days on Saturday with free access to the wealth of historical information at local museums.

Ava Jimemez of Chazy said she has lived in the area for a while but doesn’t know too much about the local history.

She recently visited the North Star Underground Railroad Museum in AuSable Chasm and said she plans on visiting many of the North Country’s museums.

Belinda Buckhart of Plattsburgh brought her grandson, Jordan Oliver, 6, to the War of 1812 Museum.

This was their third year attending Museum Days.

“He learns a little more every year,” Buckhart said.

By about 3 p.m., 213 people had visited Champlain Valley Transportation Museum and Kids’ Station.

Several families chose to spend the day museum-hopping with their children.

Jesse LaVarnway and Riley Rock of Plattsburgh brought their son, Aden LaVarnway, 8, to the War of 1812 Museum and the Champlain Valley Transportation Museum and Kids’ Station.

LaVarnway said he and Rock agree that it’s important that their son learn about the history of the area.

Jesse is a history enthusiast. He and Rock have toured Tahawus, an abandoned mining town near Newcomb, N.Y.

“We do some urban exploration — some historical sites,” Rock said.

The Transportation Museum features a 1931 America LaFrance Fire Truck. The fire truck display was of special interest to Aden, his father said.

“They had buckets of water for the first one (truck) because they didn’t invent the hose (yet),” Aden said.

His favorite exhibit, though, was the lego robots, he said.

Like Aden, David Griffin, had visited local museums during Museum Days on other years.

“I learned where the battles zones were” at the War of 1812 Museum, Griffin said. “The coolest thing about that place was seeing a cannon fire.”

Volunteers were intermittently firing an unloaded cannon for museum-goers on the lawn of the War of 1812 museum.

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