Catch a ride to our Marine Art Museum
Winona’s Minnesota Marine Art Museum is home to works by some of the biggest names in art, including Van Gogh, Picasso and O’Keeffe.
It also features a continual rotation of fresh and interesting temporary exhibitions (currently among them: photos of dogs underwater!).
The museum is one of southern Minnesota’s top tourist attractions. Yet many of us who call Winona home have never visited it.
Fortunately, those at MMAM have been taking steps to change this. They’ve adopted the slogan “Art is for Everyone!” for their Second Saturdays program, when they offer $1 admission and special activities for all ages, including live music, art projects and guided tours. It’s likely the best dollar you’ll ever spend.
Now MMAM is reaching out to welcome those for whom transportation has been an obstacle to experiencing the museum.
From Sept. 1 through Dec. 31 (and maybe beyond, if all goes well), the Minnesota Marine Art Museum will offer free rides to and from the museum through Winona Transit’s Dial-a-Ride Service any day MMAM is open (with the exception of Sundays, when Dial-a-Ride is unavailable). To schedule a ride, call 507-454-6666 the day before your planned trip.
Museum hours are Tuesday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Regular admission is $7 for adults, $3 for kids ages 5-18, and free for children 4 and under. Student admission (preschool through grad school) is free on Tuesdays.
I love the Minnesota Marine Art Museum, and am so excited about the work museum officials have been doing to make it accessible and welcoming for all.
It’s a place that’s brought me and my entire family rich, thought-provoking experiences and immeasurable joy. We Winonans are extremely fortunate to have this wonderful, world-class art museum well within our reach, and I encourage everyone in the community to take full advantage of it.
Bird club celebrates Aghaming pact
Winona Bird Club will host Beautifully Abundant Birds I Desire to express its joy over the new agreement for Aghaming Park: a John Latsch Preserve, signed last March by the city of Winona and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
I will narrate a PowerPoint show of the birdlife and nature the agreement will manage and protect at 7 p.m. Sept. 4 at the Winona Friendship Center.
The show is graced by intimate looks at wildlife from award-winning photographers from the club, fine artists with credits from National Geographic and Natural History Magazine — Allen Blake Sheldon (A.B. Sheldon Nature Photography), Andrew Nyhus, Kay Shaw (Kay Shaw Photography), Francis Koll, Howard Munson, Kathy Carlyle, Barbi Bell, Lisa Reid and the late Bill Drazkowski.
The event kicks off the bird club’s membership drive. Annual dues: $20 per individual, $30 per family.
WBC hosts environmental speakers monthly, September-April. We offer bird walks in May and take part in annual Christmas Counts. We created a conservation vision for Winona’s parks last year, still accessible at the Bird Studies tab of www.RichieSwanson.com, as is River Bird Blog, the field season that inspired Beautifully Abundant Birds I Desire.
The Raptor Resource Project, which sets the gold standard for nest cams, will do a Peregrine Falcon program for the club, Oct. 2. Matt Heeter, a reptile and amphibian expert, will unveil the mysteries of our area’s snakes Nov. 6.
WBC events are free and open to the public.
When will we curb gun violence?
How long, O Lord? How long? How long are we as a nation going to countenance this barrage of gun violence?
Those who extend thoughts and prayers at the latest mass killing, and then do nothing, at the very least exude a tincture of hypocrisy.
We cannot beat around the bush by not forthrightly saying that the ultimate purpose of a gun, especially a semiautomatic one, is to kill.
Shrugging our shoulders and sanctimoniously pointing to the Second Amendment as justification for lightly regulated manufacture, purchase and use of guns is not helpful.
I do not think our Founding Fathers envisioned the Second Amendment as a license to kill or wound thousands of our citizens every year year through the invention of ever more efficient firearms and the hateful rhetoric that spews its way through social media.
In June, the U.S. House of Representatives passed two bills that put rather tame regulations on purchasing guns — that background checks be performed on all gun sales, and that federal authorities be granted an extended period for a complete background check.
Mitch McConnell has not yet allowed these bills to be debated in the Senate. After all, McConnell’s stated goal is to obstruct anything proposed by the House.
Yes, with more pressure, now he says the Senate will look at background checks. Will he, and how much? And, is that the extent of the debate he will allow?
Let’s face it, gun violence is a health issue, as more and more people are saying. There are too many deaths, and many who have been wounded now face the possibility of lead poisoning from bullet fragments that remain in their bodies because surgical removal is too dangerous.
And politicians still refuse to outlaw lead shot. In addition, the gun industry has received exceptions to laws enacted to protect the public.
The Centers for Disease Control is forbidden to conduct research studies on gun violence. Shooting victims are not allowed to sue the gun industry for many negligence claims. Defective guns are not subject to recall as are thousands of other consumer products. (Information from Brady United Against Gun Violence.)
And, still, as mostly Republicans in legislatures and Congress invoke the sacred immutability of the Second Amendment, people are dying in ever greater numbers.
It seems as if allowing people to buy, sell and own as many guns as they want is more important than to try to prevent people from dying by gun violence.
How many more, O Lord. How many more?
Ban military-grade weapons
After the two recent mass shootings, people everywhere came out with ideas and solutions.
I honestly don’t think we’re any closer to stopping these events. Mental illness is a big part of it and easy access to firearms. I call them WMD – weapons of mass destruction, not those of the Bush era. Background checks are helpful, but if one can’t ascertain what someone is thinking, and later act on, “What good are they?”
Unless someone posts their thoughts on social media, you’ll never know. Unfortunately for one of those perps recently, he posted his ideas. When his girlfriend saw it and reported it to the police, they ignored it.
The guns of choice by the shooters should not be available to anyone except military or police. Period. They serve no purpose except on the battlefield or on our streets fighting crime. Where the good guys maybe outgunned, hunting with them is stupid. Do you want shredded venison?