The McDuffie Museum board recently approved the floor plan for the new museum building, according to the Executive Director of Camellia Partners for Heritage and Economic Development, Mary Anne Coussons.
The floor plan includes a design which will allow the museum building to be rented out for receptions. A green area and a porch can also showcase outdoor exhibits, or be used for outdoor educational classes. A paved parking lot is planned behind the building.
The first floor features exhibit areas, store, theater, vaults and kitchen. The main exhibit room will showcase the nine areas of local significance chosen by citizens of the community.
Most of the second floor will remain open to the first floor, exposing the original ceiling, "because it's so beautiful," Mrs. Coussons said. Also on the second floor will be the Director's office, a conference room and a library.
The museum will also be a promotional factor for the revitalization of downtown Thomson due to its location in the former SunTrust and First National Bank Building on Main Street.
Mrs. Coussons said a search for the museum director will begin in March of 2007. The museum is scheduled to open in December of 2007.
Currently, the museum is being promoted as a museum without walls, according to Mrs. Coussons. The museum board is undergoing a capital campaign to raise one million dollars to open the museum. Now that the plans are approved, the renovation of the building is waiting for the funds.
"Until we get the capital campaign done, we're not able to do anything," said Rusty Lovelace, the chairman of the museum board. "M-o-n-e-y, you give us a million dollars and we'll put you on a pedestal."
To date, $2,500 has been raised from the sale of store items and $68,000 has been pledged by board members, according to Mrs. Coussons. For more information, contact Mrs. Coussons at the Depot, 706-597-1000.