In the wake of the June 2 vote by the Fullerton City Council to suspend funding of the Fullerton Museum Center, a small group of residents started a grass roots movement to save the museum. The Friends of the Fullerton Museum Center is a public Facebook group that was created by Andrea Freeman to bring awareness to the decision made by the City and to encourage fellow museum patrons and citizens to speak up. While they understand the need to close the museum temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the group’s mission is to highlight the cultural and societal relevance of the museum and the benefits it brings to the City as well as to the surrounding communities in hopes of seeing a definite plan for reopening.
To date, nearly 800 members have followed the group on Facebook, and they have created a petition on Change.org, which currently has over 2000 signatures. Participants have attended and spoken at the City council meeting, reached out to council members and met with museum board members.
“Like many other members of our community, I learned the day before the June 2 council meeting that the museum was to be “temporarily de-funded” as part of the City’s budget,” Andrea Freemen said. “I was shocked. The museum is such an important part of our community. Temporary de-funding can easily become permanent. I knew other people in the community were disappointed and upset by this decision, as well, and I wanted to do something. So much of our lives have become virtual and it seemed the only way to connect with others who felt as I did was to connect online. So, I started a Facebook page mostly because I wanted to see what the possibilities were to ensure that our beloved FMC was not a victim to lack of funding and that it will be here for future generations.”
When asked why she choose to join, Suzanne Benet said, “I love how much the Fullerton Museum Center does to draw our community together through exhibits, art programs, walking tours, and social gatherings. The Museum staff works tirelessly to develop creative ways to bring diverse content and educational opportunities to our City. I hope the residents of Fullerton will unite in trying to find innovative ways to fund our Museum moving forward.”
Another volunteer and supporter of the museum said, “Not only does the Museum have a mission of providing science, history and art education, it is a congregation place for the community, and has been the initiator of a number of valuable dialogues about our culture. In addition to the colleges and universities of our City, the museum is the face of Fullerton on a global level.”
More information can be found at:
Facebook: Friends of the Fullerton Museum Center
Sign the petition: Change.org: Save the Fullerton Museum Center