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Museum offers Earth Day-related activities on April 24

Submitted by mzuercher on Wed, 04/21/2021 - 10:51
North Newton Trail Kiosk #6

In honor of Earth Day, outdoor exercise and reading, Kauffman Museum is rebooting its Kansas Day "trail adventure" from last January.

On Saturday, April 24, the museum at Bethel College invites families and others to enjoy an event that got rained out on the annual Celebrate Kansas Day! on Jan. 30.

“We will encourage walking or biking to seven of the eight North Newton trail kiosks,” said Andi Schmidt Andres, museum director and curator of education.

This “Earth Day Trail Adventure” will take place between 1:30 and 4:30 p.m.

Museum adapts Kansas Day activities to pandemic

Submitted by mzuercher on Mon, 01/18/2021 - 22:42
Kansas Day in a Box

Kauffman Museum’s annual Kansas Day celebration this year has some opportunities for in-person engagement along with virtual options.

The celebration itself is Jan. 30, but families who want to participate in “Kansas Day in a Box” need to order by Jan. 20, at

Next museum program to look at land ownership, indigenous rights

Submitted by mzuercher on Tue, 01/05/2021 - 20:46
Pauline Sharp, right, and Florence Schloneger (photo copyright Travis Heying, The Wichita Eagle; used with permission)

Florence Schloneger and Pauline Sharp will share family stories related to land ownership, economics, education and identity, Sunday, Jan. 10 at 3 p.m. via Zoom and Facebook Live.

In 2018, Schloneger, North Newton, a retired Mennonite pastor, did something that no landowner in Kansas had apparently done before.

She gave something back to the Kanza people (also known as the Kaw Nation) after generations of broken and renegotiated treaties between them and the U.S. government.

Smithsonian exhibit puts rural at the center

Submitted by mzuercher on Tue, 12/08/2020 - 15:30
Detail from "Crossroads" exhibit

This is the last week to see the special exhibit at Kauffman Museum (through Sunday, Jan. 17).

The museum has partnered with Humanities Kansas to bring the Smithsonian Institution's traveling exhibit to the local area.

Kauffman Museum has built on the photographs, hands-on activities and audio and video clips provided by the Smithsonian in the “Crossroads: Change in Rural America” to tell the history and culture of local rural life and to spark conversations using its own companion exhibit, “Of Land and People: Our Community at the Crossroads of Change.”

Museum brings back exhibit on race, stereotypes

Submitted by mzuercher on Tue, 09/08/2020 - 15:44
A view of the entry to "Sorting Out Race: Examining Racial Identity and Stereotypes in Thrift Store Donations" at Kauffman Museum

The Kauffman Museum traveling exhibit “Sorting Out Race” will be on display just through the end of this month.

COVID-19 brought home from the road “Sorting Out Race: Examining Racial Identity and Stereotypes in Thrift Store Donations,” developed by a team of museum staff and community consultants in 2015.

Its last day is Sunday, Nov. 29.

Fall Fest activities modified to include virtual events

Submitted by mzuercher on Wed, 09/02/2020 - 10:23
Ad Building in fall

Bethel will celebrate the 50th Fall Festival Oct. 3 and, as with many events this year, it will look a little different.

The most visible change will be no booths, vendors or entertainment on the Green.

Instead, planners are organizing several smaller in-person and virtual events, "still committed to being a community of Threshers," said Brad Schmidt, director of alumni engagement.

On campus, there will be the Fall Fest football game vs. Southwestern College at 6 p.m. in Thresher Stadium.

Andres named museum director

Submitted by mzuercher on Tue, 08/25/2020 - 16:27
Andi Schmidt Andres

The Kauffman Museum board of directors has appointed longtime employee Andi Schmidt Andres as museum director. 

She had been serving as acting director since Jan. 28, following the resignation of Michael Reinschmidt.

Andres began working at the museum in 1993. She has held the positions of assistant to the director, education coordinator, curator of education, transitional operations manager and, most recently, acting director.

Kauffman Museum traveling exhibit wins national award

Submitted by mzuercher on Tue, 08/04/2020 - 16:55
Voices of Conscience exhibit

The American Association for State and Local History has honored “Voices of Conscience“ with an Award of Excellence.

Bethel College's Kauffman Museum was the only entity in Kansas to win a 2020 AASLH award.

The AASLH Leadership in History Awards, now in its 75th year, is the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history.

Museum offers outdoor exhibit on coronavirus

Submitted by mzuercher on Wed, 04/15/2020 - 20:43
Exhibit mounted on windows outside Kauffman Museum front entrance

Kauffman Museum is closed to the public but still offering education to that same public on the topic at the front of everyone’s minds.

“Science Behind the News: Viruses” is a new pop-up exhibit at Kauffman Museum that is mounted outside the front entrance (the building is at the corner of Main and 27th Streets in North Newton, across from the Bethel campus).

Developed by the New York Hall of Science, the exhibit offers informative and understandable education about the novel coronavirus identified in late 2019, and most commonly known as COVID-19.

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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.