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History museum earns Award of Excellence

Published: Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012 12:06 p.m. CST

SYCAMORE – If you have not seen the exhibit “Why Sycamore Works” at the Sycamore History Museum, you are missing an “excellent” exhibit.

The exhibit recently received the prestigious Award of Excellence from the Illinois Association of Museums.

Sycamore is widely known as a lovely, small agricultural town and the county seat. But behind the scenes, the true lifeblood of Sycamore is a vibrant and active industrial base. Sycamore manufacturing has grown hand-in-hand with the steady, deliberate development of the city. In fact, Sycamore has developed in key ways to suit manufacturing, and many local products reflect solutions to specific problems or needs. The people of Sycamore, with their entrepreneurial spirit, along with savvy civic and business leaders, have created a unique manufacturing climate that has attracted a wide variety of successful firms through the decades. This exhibit explores the who, where, what and how of Sycamore’s industrial history.

According to the association’s guidelines, “Why Sycamore Works” represents a work of excellent quality that uses available resources well, is creative and meets professional standards.

“We are very honored to be recognized for our hard work. This exhibit surprises a lot of visitors. They come expecting to see a variety of things made in Sycamore, which they do, but they also enjoy hearing stories related to the people who worked on the factory floor and the creativity seen in our local companies. Families especially enjoy the hands-on room where children have a space to build a new invention, draw it on a drafting table or chalk board. They also can pack up Ideal Wirenuts to be shipped off on a ‘UPS’ truck. There really is something for everyone,” museum director Michelle Donahoe said.

The exhibit will close on Sept. 22 to make way for “Play,” which will open Oct. 13.

The Sycamore History Museum is located at 1730 N. Main St. in Sycamore. For more information call 815-895-5762 or visit sycamorehistory.org.

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