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1113 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA 23451

From the Museum Director

I don’t know about the rest of you; but, I have never been so glad to see a year come to an end. Good riddance! Scram! Take a powder. Don’t let the door hit you where the dog bit you. In fact, we don’t just want to say it. We want to do something about it. What’s needed is an exorcism, a thorough cleansing, literally, because of Coronavirus. We would all like to punch 2020 right in the nose!

Some years pass like a beloved family member,leaving cherished memories behind. Others are more like a hated house guest —one that constantly raids the icebox, smokes in the bedroom, wrecks the family car, and tells inappropriate jokes to the children.We don’t just want them out of the house. We want to fumigate it afterwards. Fires, floods, hurricanes, politics gone haywire, a deadly pandemic: it hasn’t been dull.We need some potent magic to make sure 2020 goes away and never comes back.

When I accepted the position of director 4 1/2 years ago with the Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum, I did so because of the love I have for wildfowl, wildfowling arts, carving and the people in this organization. None of that has changed for me in 2020. So looking to the future, we must,we will,and we can be successful at preserving the deWitt Cottage and the history of wildfowling and the wildfowling arts in our community.

We have been fortunate to be able to have the opportunity to prop up our organization up (financially) because of government programs and grants. This will not be a sustainable strategy as we go forward. As a nonprofit organization we must depend on a business model that is sustainable without these programs. Our plan calls for a re-design of our on premise gift shop, expansion of our online gift shop and promotion of the deWitt Cottage property as an event venue. We believe our plan is solid and sustainable.

Each of you,t hat receive this newsletter, is on this mailing list because of the support that you have given to the museum and the Guild over the past several years. All nonprofit organizations rely on the generosity of the members, visitors, customers and others who help to support the organization. Without your support, none of what we have accomplished over the past 25 years would have been possible.Thank you for your support and Happy New Year 2021!

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