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Museum program to examine history of collecting

May 17th, 2022

Dave Kreider with a copy of the Martyrs Mirror that he chose for the current Kauffman Museum special exhibit

Kauffman Museum’s next Sunday-Afternoon-at-the-Museum will be May 22 with Dave Kreider speaking on “Collecting for College and Community: Past, Present and Future.”

The program runs from 3-4 p.m. in the museum auditorium, at the corner of North Main and 27th streets on the Bethel College campus in North Newton.

Kreider was part of the team that built Kauffman Museum’s permanent exhibit “Of Land and People” (1985-88).

He rejoined the Kauffman Museum staff in 2000 and currently serves as museum technician and collections coordinator.

He designed the installation and prepared the layout for the current special exhibition “The Magic of Things: 5 Continents, 25 Centuries, 125 Years of Collecting.”

The program will use photographs and stories from collecting at Bethel College, which began in 1896 with the formation of the Museum of Natural History and American Relics.

Said Kreider, “I am privileged to work at a museum with a dynamic collection – objects gathered more than a hundred years ago and artifacts donated just this past week.

“All help us understand the histories and cultures of this place and have the potential to engage us with the future.”

Sunday-Afternoon-at-the-Museum programs are open to the public with free admission that includes the special exhibition and the museum.

The program will be recorded and available for viewing the week following the lecture on the “Kauffman Museum at Bethel College” YouTube channel (linked from the museum’s website at and uploaded on the Kauffman Museum Facebook page.

For more information on “The Magic of Things,” the associated public programs and current COVID protocols, visit or the Kauffman Museum Facebook page, or contact the museum at or 316-283-1612.

Regular Kauffman Museum hours are Tues.-Fri. 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Sat.-Sun. 1:30-4:30 p.m., closed Mondays and major holidays. Admission to the special exhibit and the permanent exhibits – “Of Land and People,” “Mirror of the Martyrs” and “Mennonite Immigrant Furniture” – is $4 for adults, $2 for children ages 6-16, and free to Kauffman Museum members and children under 6. The museum store is open during the museum’s regular hours.

About Bethel

As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.