Food trucks, live music and timeless historical artifacts are in store at the Douglas County Museum’s Mammoth 50th Anniversary party – a free event to thank the community for its generous contributions to the museum’s collection of items and oral histories.

“This is a huge thank you to the people of Douglas County, who are the people who provided their family treasures so that we could have them in order to tell the story of Douglas County,” said Penny Tannlund, president of the Museum Foundation. “We just have such a great number of items in our collections that are fascinating.”

The museum opened to the public on August 8, 1969, but the party will be on July 20 from 2 p.m to 9 p.m. Tannlund said the theme of the party is “mammoth” because the animal is the mascot of the museum.

“A mammoth tusk was found in Myrtle Creek years ago. We had those animals here at one time,” Tannlund said. “You’ll see on the outside of the museum is a drawing of a mammoth. It’s the theme that we picked to tell people that it’s a great big party.”

There will be food trucks, new exhibits, kids’ activities and live music. Kids can get their faces painted and do a scavenger hunt in the museum during the day as well. Country band Dan Harmon and Cascade County perform at 3 p.m. followed by blues-rock artist Ty Curtis at 5 p.m. and Resurrection, a Journey tribute band, at 7 p.m.

“Most of it is it’s going to be a fun family day and everybody can come in the way they come to the half shell,” Tannlund said. “We have a lot of hands-on exhibits in the museum at all times and they’ll have a chance to see how to dig up artifacts.”

The museum will also be opening a new temporary exhibit Saturday to honor the 60th anniversary of the Roseburg Blast. There will be photos of the devastation, a video and the axle from the truck that started the blast on display.

The axle belongs to the Douglas County Historical Society, which loaned the artifact to the museum for the next few weeks, said Karen Bratton, research librarian and collections manager at the museum.

All the money they have raised from the event sponsors will go towards the education program, which has been “severely cut,” Tannlund said.

“We have lost our timber receipts ... and therefore the amount of money that the commissioners have to spend on things like libraries and museums was cut out,” Tannlund said. “They’ve provided enough money for heat, lights, opening the doors, but we have hardly any staff at all.”

Tannlund said money from this event is hoped to help support the education programs for area schools.

“This is a major gift in that all the money will go to the education program,” Tannlund said. “We’ll be able to put programs that we used to run all year round — some of those we can take, put back into the community because of this event.”

Hannah Kanik is a general assignment reporter for The News-Review. She can be reached at hkanik@nrtoday.com and 541-957-4210. Or follow her on Twitter @hannah_kanik.

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Hannah Kanik is the Charles Snowden intern at The News-Review.

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