In 1974 the artists Charles Woods and David Osborn purchased the Miners Foundry and christened it the American Victorian Museum. From that then defunct industrial space, they created a 9,000 square foot venue for artistic, social and cultural events and activities. Fifteen years later, the Nevada City Winery acquired the property and donated the Miners Foundry to the Miners Foundry Cultural Preservation Trust.
At that moment this grand community asset was permanently secured to serve our residents, businesses and visitors.
Today, the Miners Foundry is launching its Holiday Campaign on the crowdsourcing website, Indiegogo. This site provides a fun and easy way for people to show their support for this beautiful, important and historic building nestled right here in downtown Nevada City.
Our goal is to raise $3,000 dollars to finish replacing our current, somewhat tired holiday decorations with new, durable, long lasting, period appropriate pieces. We began this replacement project last year. All monies raised will go directly to purchasing the decorations. Everyone who contributes to the campaign will receive their name on an ornament on this year’s holiday tree as well as a unique holiday premium.
This campaign means much more than simply decorating for the holidays. It is about taking pride in the building and what it represents and does for us. It is about continuing the vision, hard work and generosity of many fine people over the course of many years.
We are very busy all year long, every day of the year, with this season being an extra special time. In addition to hosting private parties, nonprofit fundraisers, school functions, and producing annual community events such as Artisans Festival, Nevada City Craft Fair, and Clara and The Nutcracker, we are an historical attraction. We are open seven days a week for the public to walk through its Stone Hall and Osborn/Woods Hall, marvel at the exceptional collection of mining artifacts, and take a look back in time.
The events I have attended there since its inception in the mid-1970s may number in the hundreds. I am very pleased to have watched its growth over these past four decades. Last month, for example, in one weekend alone, the Foundry hosted a 300-person multimedia conference on a Thursday, and then on to “Fright Night” on Friday with more than 600 people in attendance featuring three bands. The next day, Saturday, a beautiful wedding took place, and we then closed out the weekend on Sunday with a fundraiser for InConcert Sierra and Sierra Stages’ youth programs.
Our mission as a community nonprofit organization is to preserve, enhance and utilize the historic Miners Foundry for cultural, educational and social activities in Nevada County.
The Foundry receives no on-going public funding. Rental fees and ticket sales do not cover the costs of properly maintaining and preserving this historic building. We rely on memberships and donations to fill the gap, and to allow us keep our rental rates and ticket prices reasonable enough to allow as many groups and individuals as possible to enjoy and utilize the Miners Foundry.
To learn more about the Miners Foundry or to make a secure, tax-deductible donation, please go to www.minersfoundry.org. You may also call 530-265-5040, or mail in your contribution to Miners Foundry Holiday Campaign, 325 Spring Street, Nevada City, CA 95959.
Together we make a difference. We respectfully ask for your help. By participating in our Holiday Campaign or by becoming a member, you are supporting our commitment to preserve and maximize the opportunities this great building has to offer us, for today and into the far distant future. Thank you.
Paul Matson is board president of the Miners Foundry Board of Directors.