Come in and celebrate

From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, April 12, all are invited to the museum to mark the 130th birthday of Kalispell’s oldest public building and also a milestone birthday of its tenant, the Northwest Montana History Museum, which turns 25 this year.

See the exhibits, hear live music, eat cake, and check out local history! Visitors will have a chance to contribute to the time capsule that will be sealed up for 25 years, and view other items also set to enter the time warp.

Look to the past and the future at the birthday bash of the century.

Some might wonder what’s the big deal with the Central School building. Carroll Van West, in his well-researched Montana’s Historic Landscapes blog, described the Central School:

Designed by William White of Great Falls, this impressive statement of town building by local residents was threatened with demolition in 1991–indeed its plight was one of the issues that awoke local citizens to the need for the National Register multiple property nomination.  Not only was this landmark preserved, its transformation into a museum met a heritage tourism need in the region, and also marks, in my mind, one of the most positive developments in historic preservation in the region in the last 30 years.”

Above: In 1915 on the steps of Central School, Kalispell businessman Ah, or Alfred, Hay gathered the baseball team he sponsored in Kalispell’s still-classic posing spot. Along with other ventures, entrepreneur Hay operated a string of restaurants and hotels along the Great Northern line from Essex, Mont., to Seattle.