Oct 23, 2009 12:55 PM by sleonard
PATTERSON - The Louisiana State Museum-Patterson, housing two unique collections exploring the region's historic aviation and logging industries, has adopted a free admissions policy effective Saturday, October 24.
"Our goal is to make this wonderful family-friendly destination even friendlier, especially in a tough economy," said Sam Rykels, Assistant Secretary of the Department of Culture Recreation and Tourism and Director of the Louisiana State Museum.
Before the policy change, admission fees were $3.00 for adults and $2 for students, seniors and active military.
The museum is home to the Wedell-Williams Aviation Collection named for the legendary pilot and mechanic Jimmie Wedell and for Harry P. Williams, a south Louisiana timber baron who financed the development of faster and faster racing aircraft during the 1920s and ‘30s. Visitors can see gleaming full-scale replicas of their famous planes - like the Miss Patterson 44, the We-Will 17, and the Gilmore Red Lion 121 - and experience the thrills of "The Golden Age of Air Racing" at the new David J. Felterman Theater featuring 180-degree surround video screens, computer animation, sound and wind effects.
In a separate wing, the museum presents the story of Louisiana's cypress logging industry with a fascinating collection of sawmill equipment and other artifacts, and a short film. Thousands of locals and visitors gather on the museum grounds for the annual Cypress Sawmill Festival in April, which raises funds for the museum's community support groups.
Now through January 2010, the museum is also showing Clementine Hunter: Plantation Life, featuring 60 paintings and other works by one of Louisiana's best known and most-loved artists.
The museum is located off Highway 90 in Kemper Williams Park, adjacent to the Patterson Civic Center. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 am to 4:30 pm. For more information, call 985.399.1268
For General Information and Admission.
The facility is part of the Louisiana State Museum system. Founded in 1906, the Museum collects, preserves and interprets Louisiana's rich cultural heritage from pre-historic times to the present through more than 450,000 objects and works of art. The Museum is part of the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, which is overseen by Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu.