CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo.,
Oct. 15, 2004 – Southeast Missouri State University’s 2004 homecoming celebration will include the public debut of the Southeast Missouri Regional Museum’s new mobile museum, the Southeast Explorer.
The Southeast Explorer, a 38-foot recreational vehicle, will be introduced during a ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony on Oct. 27. Eighth District U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson will be a guest speaker at the ceremony, which will be held at 11 a.m. in front of Robert A. Dempster Hall on the Southeast campus. The mobile museum will be open for tours following the ceremony.
In addition, the Southeast Explorer will be featured in the homecoming parade, which will begin at 9:30 a.m. on Oct. 30. Following the parade, the Southeast Explorer will be open for tours during the pre-game festivities at Houck Stadium until the Southeast football game begins at 1 p.m.
The Southeast Explorer will allow the museum to serve a greater audience by sending exhibitions, lectures, art classes and public archaeology programs to locations around the region, according to Dr. Stanley Grand, director of the Southeast Missouri Regional Museum.
“The Southeast Explorer will travel to schools, libraries and public events throughout the University’s 26-county service area and beyond, providing educational experiences in a self-contained, walk-through vehicle,” Grand said.
The mobile museum is expected to hit the road in November on a “whistle stop” tour of Southeast Missouri. The tour, which is expected to last three weeks, will introduce the Southeast Explorer to the region through a series of short stops at locations throughout Southeast Missouri.
The Southeast Explorer will begin full programming visits to the region in December. Donna Rausch, an outreach specialist with the Southeast Missouri Regional Museum, will travel with the Southeast Explorer to present the educational programs.
The University’s NASA Educator Resource Center (ERC) also will use the vehicle for traveling educational programs.
The NASA ERC is a facility where NASA educational materials and programs, including posters, pictures and videos, are available to the public. The Center also offers a variety of instructional and interactive teacher and student programs and activities, both at the ERC itself and on-site in schools.
“The new Southeast Explorer will provide the region with an open door to our past and a window to the future by combining the beauty of art, the richness of our history, the interest of archaeology, and the excitement of space,” said Jackie Wortmann, project director of the NASA ERC. “Students of all ages will have a unique opportunity to learn and experience new things when the Southeast Explorer rolls into their area. Our center feels privileged to share in the adventure as this new learning center takes to the road. The displays and the technology available during tours will amaze, educate and entertain those that step aboard.”
The interior of the Southeast Explorer, which contains display cabinets, computer stations and projector screens, is designed for maximum flexibility. It features a slide-out wall that expands the interior space to accommodate a class of 20 to 25 students. The vehicle also includes a wheelchair lift and is fully handicap-accessible.
The Southeast Explorer, which was built by Winnebago Industries, is sponsored by a congressionally directed grant administered by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Additional funding is provided by Southeast Missouri State University and by a grant secured by the NASA Educator Resource Center of Missouri. The mobile museum will assist the University in its mission to provide outreach services in the region.
SOUTHEAST EXPLORER WHISTLE STOP TOUR SCHEDULE
Nov. 1 Sikeston – Lee Hunter Elementary Charleston – Warren E. Hearnes Elementary New Madrid – New Madrid Elementary Nov. 2 Caruthersville – Caruthersville Elementary Steele – South Pemiscot County Elementary Cardwell – Southland Elementary Nov. 3 Kennett – South Elementary Malden – Malden Elementary Dexter – Central Elementary Nov. 4 Advance – Advance Elementary
Nov. 8 Marble Hill – Woodland Elementary Greenville – Greenville Elementary Nov. 9 Piedmont – Clearwater Elementary Van Buren – Van Buren Elementary Nov. 10 Doniphan – Doniphan Elementary Poplar Bluff – Poplar Bluff fifth and sixth grade building Nov. 11 Chaffee – Chaffee Elementary
Nov. 15 Fredericktown – Fredericktown Intermediate Ironton – Arcadia Elementary Nov. 16 Salem – Salem Upper Elementary Steelville – Steelville Middle School Nov. 17 Potosi – Trojan Intermediate Farmington – Roosevelt Elementary Nov. 18 Ste. Genevieve – Ste. Genevieve Elementary
Dec. 6 Perryville – Perryville Elementary Bonne Terre – Bonne Terre Elementary Dec. 7 Richwoods – Richwoods Elementary Saint Clair – Edgar Murray Elementary Dec. 8 House Springs – House Springs Elementary Hillsboro – Hillsboro Middle Elementary Dec. 9 Festus – Festus Intermediate