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ANNUAL CONFERENCE

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The West Virginia Association of Museums’ annual meeting and conference will be held June 6-8, 2024, at Shepherd University in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. The theme of WVAM’s 2024 conference is “America at 250: West Virginia Plans for the Semiquincentennial.” Those who attend the conference will discuss the national efforts for the 250th anniversary and what West Virginian institutions are planning for this event. We hope that this conference will be a space for sharing ideas and planning collaborations.

Conference Registration

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If you are staying or eating at Shepherd University you MUST register by May 29 because we have to give final numbers to them on May 30.

If possible register by May 17 so we have a good headcount to submit for the catering.

Register for the 2024 WVAM Conference

If you are a member or covered under an institutional membership and the system is not recognizing your email address for the member rate, complete your registration and choose the invoice option. Email museumsofwv@gmail.com and we will check your membership status and fix the rate on your invoice. 

NEW! Virtual Conference Registration

Join by Zoom for conference session PLUS one month of access to the member section of the WVAM website to watch session recordings.

Register for Virtual Access Registrations HERE

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On Friday morning, attendees will have the opportunity to tour either the NPS Harpers Ferry Conservation Center and Collections or the NPS Interpretive Design Center. There is no extra charge for these tours, just RSVP for which tour you would like to attend on your registration form.

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Lodging & Meals

Lodging at Shepherd University

 

Conference attendees can stay in dormitory lodging at Potomac Place on the campus of Shepherd University. Two elevators allow access to the rooms in this five-story building. All rooms are equipped with Tempurpedic mattresses, a microwave, and refrigerator. This residence accommodates 296 guests in a mixture of double and single rooms within suites – and no more than two people share a bathroom. On each floor, guests have access to two light-filled study lounges as well as a larger common gathering/TV space. Vending machines are located in the spacious lobby that also contains a full kitchen. Free laundry facilities are available on the first floor. A limited number of ADA rooms are also available. More information at www.shepherd.edu/conferences

 

Single suites-- $98 per night

Double suites (each person has their own room and bathroom with a shared foyer) -- $49 per night

Guests can bring their own linens or request linens for an additional $15.

You will request Potomac Place lodging on your conference registration form.

Room Block at the Martinsburg Hilton Garden Inn

 

For those who do not wish to stay on campus, WVAM has secured a block of rooms at the Martinsburg Hilton Garden Inn in Martinsburg, WV. The hotel is approximately 20 minutes from Shepherd University and the group rate is $139 per night. Reservations must be made before May 15 to secure the group rate.

 

If you would prefer to make your reservations by phone, please feel free to contact the Hotel directly at 304-263-0101 and reference the WV Association of Museums Conference and your
group code WVMin order to receive the Room Block discounted rate.

Conference Meals

 

Conference meals will be located in the Ram’s Den Dining Hall, located in the Student Center (the same location as conference sessions). The Ram’s Den provides a wide variety of food options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Stations include: home cooking comfort food, campus greens deli, pizza & pasta, campus greens salad, international cuisines, grille, and the sweet spot.

Breakfast: $8 | Lunch: $10 | Dinner: $10

**Reservations for lodging at Potomac Place and meals at Shepherd University will be made during the conference registration process. Reservations for the Hilton must be made by individuals.**

Conference Tours

Pre-Conference Tours, Thursday, June 6

C&O Canal Tour

1:00-3:00pm, Cost: $30

Learn more at https://www.canaltrust.org/

Step over the Potomac River into Maryland – specifically, 1830s to 1920s Maryland, when mule-drawn canal boats were the way to move coal and lumber quickly. The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal was the brainchild of George Washington, who envisioned an inland water trade route between the Appalachian Mountains and Chesapeake Bay. Today, the C&O Canal National Historical Park is the eleventh most-visited site within the National Park System, with more visitors annually than signature parks like Yellowstone, Yosemite, or the Grand Canyon. Join Aidan Barnes, Director of Programs at the C&O Canal Trust, the park’s official non-profit partner, on a guided walking tour of restored Lockhouse 49, the robust canal-era Four Locks area, Dam #5 and the impressive limestone cliffs of the Big Slackwater section of the park. Participants will come away with deeper insight into the area’s history and stunning natural features, including the lives of those who lived and worked along the canal. 

Harpers Ferry Guided Tour

12:30-3:00pm, Cost: $35

Learn more at https://www.harpersferryhistory.org/certified-guide-tours

The standard tour is 2.5 hours in length and includes visits to significant historic locations that tell the story of geography and natural history, the John Brown Raid and Civil War, Meriwether Lewis at Harpers Ferry, Storer College, the Niagara Movement, transportation, waterpower and industry.

 

Your guide will meet you at the Park Visitor Center, located at 171 Shoreline Drive. They will direct you to several areas of interest of the park where you will exit the vehicle and walk. Your tour ends with a walk covering several blocks in the Lower Town. Once your Harpers Ferry Tour has concluded, you are free to explore on your own and visit the museums and Bookshop.

Jefferson County Bus Tour by Elite Excursions

12:00-3:00pm, Cost $30

Visit the circa 1734 Shepherd’s Mill where the owners will give you a short presentation on its history and start the wheel (weather and water levels permitting). Next stop will be the Jefferson County Museum in Charles Town and then a short walk to the downtown area where the Jefferson County Courthouse (recently added to the National Historic Registry) and other historical buildings are located. From there a driving tour of Charles Town will include Happy Retreat, Charles Washington’s Office, the graves of Charles and Mildred Washington, Zion Episcopal Church, site of John Brown’s hanging, and many beautiful and historic homes. This will be followed by a drive-by of Bellaire, one of the 6 Washington Family homes and the Allstadt House where John Brown held his hostages. Last stop will be at Harpers Ferry Brewing for a photo op. It looks up river to the town and confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers and is a truly iconic view of the town.

Shepherdstown Mystery Tour

8:00-9:30pm (departs from the Conference Reception), Cost: $18

Learn more at https://shepherdstownmysterywalks.com/

Stroll through Shepherdstown with a costumed guide who leads you by candlelight from one haunted and historic location to the next.

Hear stories of residents who may have left this world, but not the homes they lived in. This is a rich, scenic tour through historic Shepherdstown, the oldest town in West Virginia. Its' rich history includes early settlers, French/Indian War, Revolutionary War, Civil War, the building of the C&O Canal, numerous ghosts, and history of life along the Potomac River.

Indulge your senses as you walk through this quaint, historic, scenic town. We will walk a fast 1.5 hours and will cover 1 mile on easy terrain.

Post-Conference Tours, Sunday, June 9

Harpers Ferry Guided Tour

9:00-11:30am, Cost: $35

Learn more at https://www.harpersferryhistory.org/certified-guide-tours

The standard tour is 2.5 hours in length and includes visits to significant historic locations that tell the story of geography and natural history, the John Brown Raid and Civil War, Meriwether Lewis at Harpers Ferry, Storer College, the Niagara Movement, transportation, waterpower and industry.

Your guide will meet you at the Park Visitor Center, located at 171 Shoreline Drive. They will direct you to several areas of interest of the park where you will exit the vehicle and walk. Your tour ends with a walk covering several blocks in the Lower Town. Once your Harpers Ferry Tour has concluded, you are free to explore on your own and visit the museums and Bookshop.

Antietam Battlefield Guided Tour, 2-hours

9:00-11:00am, Cost $35

Learn more at https://antietamguides.com/tours-rates/

Highlight Tour (2 hours): This tour is designed for those with young children or people on a tight schedule, and will cover the Cornfield, Sunken Road, and Burnside Bridge overlook.

Antietam Battlefield Guided Tour, 3-hours

9:00am-12:00pm, Cost $45

Learn more at https://antietamguides.com/tours-rates/

Standard Tour (3 hours): This is our standard tour and includes an introduction to the Maryland Campaign at the Visitors Center as well as stops at the Cornfield, Sunken Road, and Burnside Bridge. It is designed for individuals or groups seeking general knowledge of the battle and the battlefield.

Not attending the 2024 WVAM Conference, but want to take one of the conference tours? 

Register for TOUR ONLY TICKETS

You do not need to be registered for the conference or be members of WVAM to purchase tour tickets.

2024 Conference Sponsors

Platinum Sponsors

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Ramenopolis


Need to build that perfect digital experience for your museum? We’re ramenopolis, and we’re here to help! Ramenopolis is a software consultancy ready to help you put together an experience you can be proud of. Our services include website development, mobile app development for iOS and Android, digital photography services such as virtual tours, branding, and more! Ready to get started on that project? Contact us by email at hello@ramenopolis.com or visit our website at https://ramenopolis.com to learn more! 

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Gold Sponsors

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American Association for State and Local History

 

The American Association for State and Local History is a national membership association dedicated to helping the history community thrive. For the better part of a century, AASLH has provided leadership and resources to its members who preserve and interpret state and local history to make the past more meaningful to all people. AASLH is the professional association for history-doers. AASLH provides crucial resources, guidance, professional development, advocacy, new publications, field-wide research, and a sense of connectedness to our institutional and individual members. Join us at aaslh.org. 

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Elite Excursions

 

Relax during your time in the Eastern Panhandle and let us do the driving! Whether you are interested in tours with stops at breweries, distilleries, and wineries or history and shopping, we are dedicated to making your stay in the Harpers Ferry area, one to remember! Attention to detail and a love of everything hospitality makes Elite Excursions WV your one-stop shop for planning a great getaway! 

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Silver Sponsors

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Bistro 112

Bistro 112 is a neighborhood French inspired Bistro in the center of historic downtown Shepherdstown. It is a favorite of local residents and a haven for travelers passing through - who enjoy the area for its history, theater, music, biking trails, small shops and river activities. The Bistro, decorated in eclectic art, offers creative French food at affordable prices. Built in 1830, the Bistro has several dining areas: front bar, upstairs dining room, and out outdoor garden - featuring a communal table. We prepare local ingredients into French favorites such as steak frites, escargot, roasted chicken, salad niçoise, house made soups and desserts. 

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Conservation Center for Art & Historic Artifacts

The Conservation Center for Art & Historic Artifacts (CCAHA) is a nonprofit paper conservation and preservation education facility with experts in a range of disciplines, in operation since 1977. Our mission is to provide expertise and leadership in the preservation of cultural heritage. Our conservators repair and stabilize books, photographs, and documents. Our preservation services staff works in the field, providing education programs and helping institutions plan for the future of their collections. We also offer digitization services, fundraising assistance, framing, and more. CCAHA is based in Philadelphia but delighted to bring preservation resources and training to West Virginia through a generous NEH grant. 

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EleeHub

 

As a nonprofit professional, you may be aware of Google's FREE advertising program, which provides up to $10,000 monthly in free Google Ads. But you're probably not taking full advantage of it because you lack the time, money, or skills to manage these ads effectively. Now, you can accelerate your impact with EleeHub’s simple and cost-effective solution: comprehensive ad management services for Google's Ad Grant program at a low monthly rate. 

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Friends of Blackwater

Friends of Blackwater ("FOB") was founded in 2000 to lead the campaign to preserve and protect the 10,000-acre Blackwater Canyon in Tucker County, West Virginia, in the heart of the Allegheny Highlands. FOB has evolved to a broader mission of building a circle of love and protection for the region and its human and natural communities. Local heritage and history, for example, are both a precious legacy and an important tourism business resource; just like the beauty of the natural world.. FOB works with many partners to tell inspiring stories from the past and present to help create a better future. 

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MuseuM Service Corporation

Museum Services Corporation has been designing and building equipment for conservators around the world for over 44 years. Trusted in labs from the Smithsonian Institute to the National Palace of Taiwan, The Royal Danish Palace and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and many conservators in private practice. Let our decades of experience work for you when outfitting your space. Whether working with paper, paintings, textiles or other objects, Museum Services Corporation stocks a wide range of supplies and tools for conservation projects. With custom manufactured mounting options, we can help take your projects from the worktable to the wall. 

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Historic Shepherdstown Commission

Historic Shepherdstown Commission & Museum (HSC) is an independent nonprofit corporation that maintains and operates the historic Entler Building complex and Historic Shepherdstown Museum. Our organization is volunteer based and is dedicated to the promotion and preservation of the incredible history of Shepherdstown. In addition to managing fourteen small business offices at the Entler and operating the Historic Museum, HSC maintains the Shepherd Cemetery, has a popular Speaker Series (four public talks per year), an archives program, an annual awards program, partners with other local nonprofits on various projects, and participates in community activities such as StreetFest, Earth Day, Fourth of July parade, and Christmas in Shepherdstown. 

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West Virginia University, Department of History

The WVU Public History program, launched in 1979, prepares graduate students for a wide range of careers in museums, archives and libraries, historic preservation, and historic site interpretation through is MA in Public History and a certificate in Cultural Resource Management. Partnerships with the National Park Service, campus museums, the West Virginia and Regional History Center, and the West Virginia Department of Culture and History, the Public History program provide professional hands-on experiences for students. Current course offerings include Museum Studies, Historic Site Interpretation, Oral History, Local History Research Methods, and Historical Administration. 

Bronze Sponsors

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