50 years of educating future generations by preserving our past

Published: May. 1, 2016 at 5:43 PM MDT
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The Museums of Western Colorado is celebrating its 50th year in Grand Junction and the event Sunday was to not only learn about history here on the western slope, but you can take a step back in time.

All three locations of Museums of Western Colorado they were celebrating 50 years.

Because on this day half a century ago, the museum opened up their doors to the public and other than showcasing history, the museum is taking their visitors back in time to 1966.

"I think it’s so important to know where we've been and to know what people have gone through to get us here and I think young people benefit from that and appreciate what we have today even more,” said museum supporter Michael Poll.

A focus on preserving previous generations, so our future ones can know their past.

"If we don't strive to maintain these, our childrens’ childrens’ children will never have knowledge of whom or what we are today or what’s going on. We move forward but we never forget," said long-time Grand Valley resident, Paula Dunfee.

A center half-century old, preserving our history that makes each community unique.

"It’s important that generations to come get a chance to learn about anything from Indians to guns to nuclear energy to all of the incredible history that we have in this valley," Poll added.

"The museum of western Colorado is very much a community museum we started in 1966 and ever since because of community support. That has carried us through the tough times and helped us grow," Executive Director the Museums of Western Colorado, Peter Booth said.

The museum is throwing back to 1966 prices of admission to symbolize how far we have come, along with a ribbon cutting to start a new era.

"Our heritage in this area is very unique and it needs to be preserved. Preserved for youth and newcomers and resident and visitors alike." Booth continued.

Learning about the past, that shapes the world we know today is something grand valley residents think is vital in order to understand our future.

"Anyone can fly through a museum but you have to take time, to sense it feel it experience it and live it to a degree," Dunfee explained.

The Museums of Western Colorado has three sites and together they are one of only 12 accredited by the American Alliance of Museums in the entire state.

Sunday there was also an antique car show happening at the Cross Orchards location and at the Dinosaur Journey location they were showing bad dinosaur movies.

The event went from 12 p.m. - 4 p.m. Sunday with 1966 prices $1.25 for families, 50 cents for adults and 25 cents for children.

For more information on upcoming museum events go to or click on the link on the right side of your screen.