By David Haerle
The Daily World
The Northwest Carriage Museum in Raymond has reopened its doors and is reaching out to past patrons and future ones with a new membership drive featuring a partnership with Willapa Harbor businesses and additional benefits for members.
While the museum is only operating at 25% capacity by following Washington Safety Protocol, it’s a 10,000-square-foot facility, which means there’s plenty of room to spread out and dozens of people could attend safely at one time, according to Laurie Bowman, executive director of the museum.
“Twenty-five percent is like 68-and-a-half people,” at any one time Bowman said with a chuckle. “We don’t usually get that many people this time of year anyway,” she added, “so it’s perfect for us right now. She also noted there’s plenty of room for people to spread out and it’s a place to go even in the inclement weather of recent weeks.
“We’re getting a few people coming through — not as many as we like because of the pandemic and weather — but they are just so happy that we’re open again,” said Bowman.
The museum is also seeking to renew and boost its membership, offering existing members who renew their annual 2021 membership, a new card will allow them to receive significant discounts and/or savings at several local establishments.
“After a very surreal 2020, we wanted to “think outside the box” … and do our part in encouraging people to support all of our local businesses and families,” stated Bowman. “We approached several of our business members with the idea and the response was fantastic.” she added. The new program is for new members joining the museum, said Bowman.
Dennis Company (Raymond), Slater’s Diner, Pitchwood Alehouse, WooHoo Winery, Willapa Brewing Company, Willapa Valley Lavender Farm, Wild Man Brewing Company, Elixir Coffee Shop & Express, 7th St. Coffee, Bay Center KOA and Alder and Company are participating businesses. Discounts vary by business. Additional businesses may be joining the program over the next few months,” Bowman stated.
Members also enjoy other privileges including: free admission, 10% off gift shop, a quarterly newsletter and private tours .
The museum is home to one of America’s finest 19th-century, horse-drawn vehicle collections and artifacts in the country. It has grown from the original 21 vehicles in 2002 to 58 vehicles on display today — 59 and 60 are in the curator’s shop.
The Northwest Carriage Museum’s winter hours are Thursday through Monday, 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. The museum is located at the corner of Highway 101 and State Route 6 (314 Alder St.) in Raymond. Visit www.nwcarriagemuseum.org or call 360-942-4150 for more information.