When I tell people I am the only full-time staff member at the Laurel Historical Society, I get a pretty predictable reaction.
Eye brows are raised and there is a quick intake of breath. Followed by a sarcastic "That must be a lot of fun."
I reassure these concerned people that I have a part time assistant, a very active board, and a critical mass of dedicated volunteers.
But I know that even though I say these things, people imagine me running around the Museum like a chicken with my head cut off trying to get everything done.
In reality, some days I do look a little like a flailing chicken. But that is because of my own craziness and does not reflect on the work of my wonderful volunteers.
Monica, the part-time assistant to the Director, and I are joined daily by dedicated volunteers.
Some days it is our resident grumpy registrar, Charlie. He comes in and makes fun of me for being loud, but constantly works hard to make sure our collection is in order. Without his hard work and the hard work of his cohort, Marlene, our collection would be a mess.
Other days, the volunteers that join us are the Docents that keep the Museum open for visitors. They sit patiently waiting for visitors chatting about this or that, but as soon as that visitor comes through the door they are ready to impart knowledge on them. It's amazing how quickly they can go from debating the best way to cook eggplant to telling the history of the Mill.
For special events, I call upon our Public Programming Committee. This committee works hard to provide quality program for all of our audiences--young and old alike. We have junior docents on this committee that like to wear period dress for our kids events.
We have 2 mother-daughter teams that are essential to our success. We have teachers (both active and retired), a principal, a human resources specialist, a public relations specialist, and more. This committee is willing to get dirty with the kids or set up a laptop for a lecture. Without them, there would be no programming at the LHS.
We have volunteers who are in charge of the Museum Shop, the Research Library, the Landscaping of the Museum, and more.
We have so many volunteers doing so much that sometimes I wonder what is left for me to do.
I guess it leaves me time to brag about them.
But instead I just spend my time coming up with more work for everyone to do!