Three years after its groundbreaking, Shawnee's longtime downtown museum and depot site just celebrated its open house.
Right next to the Pottawatomie County Historical Society and Museum at the Santa Fe Depot at 614 E. Main St., now sits the Pottawatomie County Museum — Paul and Ann Milburn Center, at 207 N. Minnesota (just north of the depot).
Director Ken Landry said with the help of Dr. and Mrs. Paul Milburn, numerous donors from the community, and volunteers and staff, a lot has been accomplished.
“The building has been erected and the west wing has been completed, along with the restrooms and offices in the main area,” Landry said.
The facility is approximately 90 percent complete, Landry said, and fundraising continues in a push for the goal line.
“We are actively seeking grants and financial assistance from the City of Shawnee and other entities to complete the building and grounds, and operate the museum,” he said.
Fundraising for the new museum started in 2009, Landry said.
So far, $1.8 million in donations from more than 220 individuals, businesses and organizations over the last 10 years of fundraising have made the new building possible, he said.
“We still need about $300,000 to completely finish the museum, inside and out,” Landry said.