Bend, Ore. – The High Desert Museum has been selected as a Smithsonian Affiliate, which will give it access to exhibits and artifacts from the world’s largest museum and research complex.
The wildlife and living history museum south of Bend will also have access to Smithsonian Institution educational programs, book tours and lectures.
Harold Closter, director of Smithsonian Affiliations, is announcing the partnership today during the opening reception of the Bend museum’s new exhibit, “WWII: The High Desert Home Front.”
When considering museums for affiliation, the Smithsonian Institution looks at the quality of a museum’s facilities, the training and professionalism of its staff and its mission to educate the public.
The High Desert Museum applied for the affiliation, and was accepted at the end of last summer. The museum will pay an annual fee of $3,000 to cover the cost of bringing Smithsonian employees, education programs and exhibits to the museum.
High Desert Museum members are able to visit other Smithsonian Affiliates for free.
In Oregon, the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum in McMinnville and the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals in Hillsboro are already Smithsonian Affiliates.
A total of 216 Smithsonian Affiliates are in 46 states and Puerto Rico and Panama.
In the past two decades, more than 8,000 Smithsonian artifacts have been displayed at Smithsonian Affiliates.