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Phase Two starts at Veteran's Museum

Passersby will have noticed some construction work on the new veteran's museum this week as masons began covering the new addition to the "In Their Own Words" Veterans Museum with rockface block.

Passersby will have noticed some construction work on the new veteran's museum this week as masons began covering the new addition to the "In Their Own Words" Veterans Museum with rockface block.

The goal is to have this portion of the exterior finished by the opening date of August 4. They'd like to be able to complete the remaining exterior to look like the picture but that that will depend on how much additional money is raised.

Up until now, organizers have been raising money for Phase I. Now that it's nearly ready to open, they are looking ahead to Phase II which would complete the stonework on the exterior as well as landscaping of the grounds. About $200,000 is needed to complete this phase of the project.

Called ITOW (In Their Own Words) The museum features an extraordinary series of exhibits based on interviews with area veterans. Project Manager Lina Belar, believes this museum will have national significance and hopes to complete the exterior so it will look as good as the interior.

A few groups have been invited to take virtual tours through the museum and all have been greatly impressed. The state-of-the-art exhibits will be as good as any in larger cities. Belar admits to using ideas from other places in her design.

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Meetings with staff of the Newseum in Washington, DC, the Women's Military Memorial and the Minnesota Historical Society significantly influenced the design of ITOW. In addition, there are some new concepts and ideas that Belar admits she's never seen used before.

"The whole idea behind these exhibits is to make it very personal. These are the stories of real people, in their own words. When you finish a tour of the museum you'll feel like you really know them. That's what history is really about anyway; people's stories."

For more information on the project call 218-346-7676.

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