Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center receives grant

Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center (KTM&HC) has received a $10,000 grant from Connecticut Humanities (CT Humanities) as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act economic stabilization plan. Funding for the grant has been provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and regranted through CT Humanities.

The funding is earmarked for:

· Curriculum-aligned school programs for local public and private school partners, including Title 1 schools, in the form of a digital platform;

· Virtual and socially distanced family programs which enrich the cultural experiences of the local community;

· Programs which provide historic context for contemporary issues facing the community around the topics of slavery, privilege, race, and gender, and;

· Maintenance of KTM&HC historic collections, buildings, and gardens.

KTM&HC, a 501c-3 not-for-profit museum and history center, relies on multiple revenue streams, including annual fundraisers, museum admissions, programming fees, revenues from school programs, ticket sales for community events, and private event rentals which serve the local community. As a destination where history was truly made, KTM&HC is an engine of economic activity for the town of Ridgefield Connecticut.

“Keeler Tavern Museum plays a critical role in preserving Ridgefield’s history and sharing its stories with the public,” said Scott Wands, manager of grants & programs for Connecticut Humanities. “CT Humanities is pleased to be able to help the institution move its programming online and maintain its operations and staff during this unprecedented time.”

In 2019, nearly 10,000 people visited the four-acre site for museum tours, school programs, lectures, or private social events.

“With the mandatory closures of indoor community spaces to help curb the spread of COVID-19, all our normal revenue streams — critical sources of operating funds — completely dried up,” said Hildegard Grob, KTM&HC executive director. “We are grateful for the support we receive from CT Humanities, and for our representatives in the Connecticut legislature and Congress, who recognize the important role that CT Humanities plays by bringing energy and vitality to the cultural, historic, and democratic institutions that tell our stories, build community, and enrich our lives. Thanks to this generous grant, among other sources, KTM&HC will be able to continue fulfilling its mission digitally.”