Executive Director Updates July 2019

Welcome to July at the Museum!

I hope the first half of your year has gone well; it has at the museum. As we’re wrapping up June, I hope that you and your family enjoyed Memorial Day, Father’s Day and are getting set up to celebrate Independence Day. The museum will close at 4 p.m. on both Wednesday, July 3, and Thursday, July 4, so volunteers and staff may participate in community events both evenings.

The first half the year has been spectacular for the museum in several areas. We’ve had staff growth and evolution that has given us a broader base of engineers on both trains. Todd DeFeo has transitioned from advertising to online. With that move, you’ll note that the monthly newsletter “Crossings” is getting a transformational re-engineering to make it more readable (especially on mobile devices). We held our first session of summer camp and we’ve seen a tremendous number of participants in our educational programs, which continues to reinforce the need to plan for growth.

The second quarter also had a stepped-up emphasis on strategic planning. The museum has retained the services of First Community Development to lead this effort, and there’s a team of a dozen volunteers meeting bi-weekly to advance the cause. In June, we expanded this group by inviting an equal number of community leaders to begin adding their voice to how we can improve the museum over the next five years. The discussions have been positive, and I believe you’ll be excited to see the results as the museum continues to grow.

Also, during the second quarter, we made significant strides in improving the museum’s visibility to the general public. We acquired the ability to put a sign at the front of the museum on Buford Highway that is significant for both its size and for being lit up at night.

We have a trio of events coming starting in August with our annual Trains, Trucks & Tractors event. We’ve commitments from several perennial visitors to return with exhibits, and we’re looking forward to new participants as well where we’ve invited several antique truck collectors groups to participate. As always each day will be unique based on participation, and this year, the food choices will rotate during the weekend.

I hope you’ve been pleased with what you’ve seen at the museum in your recent visits. We look forward to your next visit, and I hope you’ll enjoy the easier-to-read “Crossings” coming your way.

Please feel free to reach out to our staff and me if we can make your visit more enjoyable and I hope to see you at the museum soon!


About Randy Pirkle 54 Articles
Randy Pirkle is the museum's Executive Director Emeritus.

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