Direct Access to the Natchez Trace
The Guild was granted a construction permit from the National Park Service to build a pedestrian boardwalk from the Old Trace turnabout to the front entrance of Mississippi Craft Center, which fronts the Trace. This direct access will make it much easier for the 13 million people who travel the Natchez Trace each year to experience the Craft Center. It will also provide direct access from the multi-purpose recreational trails to the Center.
Special thanks to Mike Goff and Headwaters, Inc. for conducting the required Environmental Assessment pro bono; Natchez Trace Superintendent Mary Riser and her staff for working with us to secure the permission; Jeanne Caraway and the Department of Parks, Wildlife and Fisheries for the grant to construct the boardwalk; and, C-Spire Foundation and the Natchez Trace Association for contributing to the grant’s local match. Request for bids will go out early January with the goal of awarding the contract in early February and completing the boardwalk by early Spring.
Building for the Arts Projects
Thanks to a Building for the Arts grant from the Mississippi Legislature and the Mississippi Arts Commission who awarded and administered the grants, the Guild has been able to improve its educational programs at the Mississippi Craft Center.
The studio will be used to teach woodworking and woodturning classes for all skill levels and age groups. The 440 square foot addition to the Craft Center features 5 work stations, a filtration system for eliminating dust particles from the air, an ac/heating unit, tool chests, and storage for supplies.
Class offerings will begin in early 2016.
Contemporary Craft Collection
The interior wall of Harbor View ( top of the glass staircase) was built out to create shelves to showcase the Guild’s permanent collection of Contemporary Crafts. More items and information about each piece will be added in January and on an ongoing basis.
Improvements to Main Permanent Collection
Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians Craft Exhibit
Two display cases and additional craft items were added to complement the main display case given to the Guild by the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians to create a bigger exhibit for the tribe’s contributions to craft. Much of the region’s craft originated with the Choctaws and this is an important part of the Craft story that the Guild wishes to share.
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