Two-minute tours start with Shoe museumWhat if you could visit every museum in Minnesota from home? Some day soon you may be able to do just that.
By: Jon Swedien, The Republican Eagle
What if you could visit every museum in Minnesota from home? Some day soon you may be able to do just that.
A non-profit company, Museums of Minnesota, is working to create two-minute videos, or "tours," of museums from across the state that it will post to its website.
To date the company has only created one two-minute tour, but that tour is of the Red Wing Shoe Co. Museum.
"It was just another way we could promote Red Wing to a new audience," Shoe spokesman Peter Engel said of the decision to do the recording. The video of the Shoe museum showcases the world's largest boot and other memorabilia, including Norman Rockwell advertisements.
The Internet videos are an offshoot of the Museums of Minnesota's main project, a four-part television series that will feature museums from across the state. The television series is now in pre-production.
Chuck Strinz, a writer and director for the series, said he hopes the web tours increase interest in museums and introduce people to some museums they may not otherwise have known about.
"It's a good opportunity for museums to showcase themselves," Strinz said. He added, "The fun in this is showing people something they don't know about."
Financing for the videos will come from an underwriter, Strinz said. While the Shoe was able to finance its own video, public museums will most likely need to find a party interested in footing the bill.
Engel praised the work Museums of Minnesota did. He said the group puts out a quality video pretty cheap and that the crew was good to work with.
"It was pretty painless," he said.
Goodhue County Historical Society Director Char Henn said she didn't know much about the project but that it is something the museum will be looking into. She said it could possibly be a good way to attract more people.
Strinz said the idea behind the online museum tours stems in part from the early 1990s, when he made a movie about the Mississippi River.
During that project, while driving around the state, he came across a number of fascinating museums. It was something that he has continued to enjoy.
"I like driving the back roads and I like finding the little museums," Strinz said.
The two-minute tour of the Shoe museum can be seen at http://www.museumsofmn.com/two-minute-tours.html.