Rehoboth Museum thanks supporters

August 3, 2020

The Rehoboth Museum would like to publicly express our deep appreciation of the efforts of our state government representatives, Sen. Ernie Lopez and Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf, to enable the museum to receive state grant-in-aid funding, and also of the work of Sussex County Councilman Doug Hudson for successfully sponsoring a grant to the museum from Sussex County Council.

The state grant-in-aid program and the county local grant program are significant resources for nonprofit organizations like the Rehoboth Museum. At this particular point of time, when museums like ours have had to temporarily close our doors to the public because of the COVID-19 pandemic, this measure of financial support is particularly valuable.

These stipends were received at the time the museum’s board of directors made the unpleasant decision to postpone our popular Beach Ball fundraising event, traditionally held in August. We had made the decision that even if statewide restrictions were loosened in August, it would nevertheless be best for the health and safety of all museum supporters, Beach Ball attendees, and museum employees to take a step back at this time and not take any risks. Sen. Lopez, Rep. Schwartzkopf, and Councilman Hudson have been regular supporters of the museum and can appreciate our need to find ways to replace the loss of the Beach Ball revenue to keep museum programs intact.

In lieu of the Beach Ball, the museum has, instead, launched a matching gift initiative called the “Beach Ball Bounce Back” campaign. A total of $15,000 has been pledged by sponsors and donors, and we are asking members and friends to make individual donations which, when added together, will match that amount. The campaign continued through Aug. 1. Current members have kept their membership status active, but we need this extra boost to continue to care for the collections and provide programming.

Corporate Sponsors who have made this challenge possible include M&T Bank, WSFS Bank, The Bank of Delmarva, Community Bank, RE/MAX Realty, Arena’s, Lyons Insurance Company, Berkshire Hathaway-Gallo Realty, Harvey Hanna and Associates, and media sponsors the Cape Gazette, Delaware Beach Life magazine, and CAMP Rehoboth.  Readers of the Cape Gazette will also be interested to know that while our doors are shut, the museum is utilizing emails and online forums to engage people interested in museum activities. For instance, the museum has launched a YouTube channel to feature videos about local historian Paul Lovett’s diorama representing Rehoboth Beach c. 1910, and a series of videos called “Off the Shelf” featuring items from the permanent collection. Additionally, the society has begun a series of educational programs using an online meeting platform. 

As we all deal with the effects of this pandemic, we at the Rehoboth Museum will continue to work to build and maintain this important historical and social resource for the Rehoboth community. 

Thank you Ernie, Pete, and Doug for your continued support.

David Mann
Rehoboth Beach Historial Society
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