A tour of the Governor's Mansion and a chataqua presentation featuring historic figures Jim and Belle Butler were a few of the highlights Sunday as Governor Kenny and First Lady Dema Guinn opened the Mansion to host an afternoon tea. The gardens were open, the weather was perfect, and one of Nevada's finest, Moya Lear, was pouring tea.
Thirty-five hundred invitations went out for the event, a fund-raiser which is expected to raise about $12,000 for the W.M. Keck and the Nevada State Museums, as well as celebrating the legacy of Nevada mining throughout the state's history.
"I love to talk about the history of Nevada," First Lady Dema Guinn said, noting that when she and Gov. Guinn moved into the mansion, there was little to remind them of Nevada's historic legacy, and she is working to change that.
Part of the money raised Sunday will help fund the Marjorie Russell CLothing and Textile Exhibits, dedicated to preserving and exhibiting clothing throughout history at the Nevada State Museum in Carson City.
The W.M. Keck Museum is located in the historic John Mackay School of Mines building on the University of Nevada campus. The museum is part of the original Mackay School of Mines, and was renovated in 1993 with no electricity on the ground floor to simulate its original state. A small museum, about 2,000 square feet, it displays minerals, fossils, and relics from Nevada's mining history.
"We have no operating budget for the Museum," Rachel L. Dolbier, interim curator of the Museum said, noting the state contributes $369 a year for the museum's expenses. The money raised Sunday will go to expanding exhibits, storage, acquiring better mining specimens, and expanding the exhibits, which include the originals collected in 1908.
Scores of sponsors, includin the Barrick Goldstrike Mines, Kennecott Rawhide Mining Company, and the Nevada Mining Company pitched to to cover costs of the event, but much of the credit goes to the Guinns, according to Dyane Bryan of the Nevada Mining Association.
"We're very thankful to the Guinns for stepping up to the plate and hosting this event," she said.