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by John Dostal

Bennington, February 12, 2002 - The Covered Bridge Museum wing is now fully enclosed together with the connector to the Bennington Arts Center Building on West Road
       The 120-foot wing, a replica of a covered bridge, is being added to the Center owned and operated by Bruce Laumeister. The grand opening is planned for April, 2002.
      Work is underway to subdivide a portion at one end of the new wing as an office for the coordinator for the Museum, the Arts Center and the Oldcastle Theater.
       I will be communicating with Richard Sanders Allen (celebrated writer of several books on covered bridges) exchanging concepts for displays which will follow the concepts in his book Covered Bridges of the Northeast. Why they were built, how they were built, what tools were used, who built them, types of construction, etc.
       All exhibits will feature many photographs from the Allen archives in Westminster. The south wall will have ten spaces about ten feet wide photographically depicting the eight most used trusses in the Bridges in Vermont together with a photo display of tools in use and the actual tools if we can obtain them.
       Additionally in the east end of the Museum wing there will be a small theater, about 25 seats facing a large TV Screen on which will be an orientation display depicting the processes of building a Bridge. Somewhere in the overall space it is planned to have a model railroad traveling through several model covered bridges. There will also be several small model covered bridges built to scale, depicting types of construction possibly in cutaway versions.
      A gift shop will be squeezed in somewhere. A reference area will contain three-ring binders and material from national and international covered bridge associations and societies with data and visualizations. There is also a room in the Arts Center for archival materials if the future requires this. The entire space will be temperature controlled.

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Joe Nelson, P.O Box 267, Jericho, VT 05465-0267,

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This file posted February 12, 2002