Museum to host tiny village exhibit

A sleigh with reindeer sit parked outside of a pharmacy Tuesday at the annual Department 56 Miniature Apartment Village exhibit in the Historic Brownsville Museum.(Denise Cathey/The Brownsville Herald)

The exhibition must go on – that is the Department 56 Miniature Village Exhibit at the Historic Brownsville Museum.

For the past last several years the museum has had a tradition of displaying the miniature village exhibit donated by the Gloor Family in memory of collector June Gloor who kept it up all year long at her home.

“We were approached by her son to see if the museum was interested in taking on the collection and we were and we brought it over,” said Aubrey Nielsen, collections manager for the Brownsville Historical Association.

“The way you see it at the museum is the way it was in her home,” Nielsen said. Gloor had a room at her residence that was strictly dedicated to the exhibit.

Nielsen said the museum receives telephone calls every season to see if the Department 56 Miniature Village Exhibit will be on display. “It has become kind of a tradition for families to come out and see it.”

Because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, there was some discussion on how to safely display the exhibit. Ideas were tossed around including that of having a virtual exhibit, but museum officials decided to open the museum with safety precautions.

“We decided that we could still open it up and still maintain those safety precautions while it is being displayed at the museum,” Nielsen said.

Visitors are required to follow guidelines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help stop the spread of the virus.

“We do require that all of our visitors wear face coverings and if they don’t have one, we are more than glad to provide a mask. We do have sanitizers and sanitizing stations if they would like to use those as well and they should be six feet apart if they are not within your group,” Nielsen.

The Department 56 Miniature Village has everything you  d think a village should have including a fire station, newspaper office, a drug store and even a Starbucks Coffee Shop.

“ It is something worth experiencing. I know I truly enjoy it,” Nielsen said.

The exhibit will remain on display until Jan. 29.

The Historic Brownsville Museum is located at 641E. Madison St. Viewing the exhibit is included in the museum’s entrance fee, which is $6 for adults, $4 for seniors, $2 for students and free to children under age 6. Brownsville Independent School District students, teachers and military members get in free.

The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. It will be closed on Dec. 24, 25 and 26.

For more information, call (956) 548-1313.

lmartinez@brownsvilleherald.com