Without an army of volunteers, much of the programming would not be available at the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History, so on Monday the museum held its 15th annual volunteer brunch to honor their work.
Angela Yacano was honored as volunteer of the year, although she was not able to attend. Rick Smith was honored as docent of the year.
Nancy Davis, guest services coordinator, said Yacano is always bubby and smiling. She said Yacano is always there for her when she needs her help.
Smith said he enjoys being a docent, which means teacher, and has been volunteering for the past 10 years.
“I enjoy the history of our community and sharing it with others, especially school groups. I think the museum is a wonderful asset to our community,” said Smith. “I love talking to the senior citizens, especially those from this area, because they can teach me something.”
Smith especially loves giving tours of Henry Wright’s general store in the museum that he used to go to as a boy.
Matt Edwards, executive director of the museum, said there are 125 active volunteers at the museum.
“We are very fortunate that we have a large group of people who give us the gift of their time. We want to thank them for making the museum what it is today,” said Edwards.
While some of the volunteers weren’t able to attend the event, Davis recognized volunteers who have volunteered for five or more years.
Jane King was recognized for five years of service. Frances Bowman, Rachael Jarrell Susan King and Lavinia Tillotson were recognized for 10 years service. Those who were recognized for 15-years of volunteering at the museum included Jean Atkins, Christine Beamer, Lib Boyles Bennie Burton, Magdalene Comer, Ethelene Edwards, Elaine Harbour, Treva Haynes, Zeo Stone and Betty Wright.
She also recognized those who are volunteering for their first year.
Edwards said that the speaker who was slated to speak had to cancel last week, so he decided to play a little game that would let the volunteers get to know each other. There were museum coffee mugs at each table. There was a numbered Casino Royale card inside each one. Each volunteer was asked to stand up and tell the number of things about themselves equal to the number on the card.
Elaine Harbour said she was glad she started volunteering at the museum.
“It has changed my life forever,” said Harbour.
Bennie Burton told the crowd how much the museum has enriched her life.
Pat Smith said she enjoys working the front desk, except when she has to make change, because she’s not good at math. Her comment got a laugh from the crowd.
Jean Cook said she got a queen, so she wanted to be “Queen for the Day.”
“I work at the front desk and I make all the mistakes I can make,” Cook said with a laugh.
Glenda Edwards, the museum’s executive director’s wife, said she doesn’t volunteer, but rather gets “volunteered,” which also got a laugh from the crowd. She said she helps out with the Museum’s Kid’s Club and Tarheel Junior Historian’s program.
John Canosa said he loves the museum so much, that he donated his collection of thousands of model cars, which are on display on the third floor.
“I love my little town. I love the museum,” said Canosa.
Blanton Youell said his daughter Maddie is a huge fan of the kid’s area on the third floor.
Davis also recognized Amy Snyder, who has been the museum’s curator of collections for 15 years.
Edwards said the volunteers are so important to the museum because they are the “front line” people who greet visitors at the museum.
“These folks have a passion for history and for our museum. We are so thankful for their service,” said Edwards.
For more information on the museum, call 786-4478 or go to www.mamrh.org.
Reach Mondee Tilley at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 719-1930.