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Home / Czech Museum kicks off drive to raise $2.5 million
After the 2008 flood, Gail Naughton heard from many people who asked how they could help the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library.
“Now is the time we need your help,” Naughton said Friday as the museum kicked off a capital campaign to raise $2.5 million in the Cedar Rapids area.
Naughton, the museum's CEO and president, said the Cedar Rapids campaign will generate momentum for a national campaign that will begin in January.
The total goal for flood recovery is $25 million, which includes flood recovery; establishing the Czech Village Kosek Building as a permanent part of the museum campus; restoring two historic buildings; the new museum and library with permanent exhibition and a $2 million endowment.
Naughton said at a news conference that $20 million has been raised so far.
That includes a $3 million Hall-Perrine Foundation grant that needs a $6 million match.
Vision Iowa's Community Attraction and Tourism grant of $2.9 million, Western Fraternal Life Association's pledge of $355,000 and AEGON Transamerica Foundation's grant of $300,000 bring that matching amount to just over $3.5 million.
The museum is reaching out to Cedar Rapids area residents to raise the rest of the match.
“Every gift counts and every gift matters,” Naughton said.
The announcement was made at the flood-damaged museum, 30 16
Ave. SW. That building will be moved across the street in February, where it will be elevated 11 feet higher or 3 feet above the 2008 flood level.
Museum building and grounds chairman, Gary Rozek, said the 1,400-ton building is “arguably the largest museum ever moved.”
Ground breaking is planned for this fall.
The original building will be expanded to 50,000-square-feet and will feature a 5,500-square-foot library and archives; programming space with room to seat 400; three galleries; a 55-seat theatre and outdoor amphitheater.
Parking for 65 vehicles will be under the building. The museum's 1880s immigrant house will be moved closer to 12
Naughton noted that the museum hosted 35,000 visitors annually before the flood, with an economic impact of $1.1 million.
“We want to regain that and we want to surpass that when we reopen,” she said.
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