WARREN, Ohio – The National Packard Museum in Warren overcame a series of costly obstacles in 2021.
The lack of revenue from facility rentals and fundraising events created a shortage in the automobile museum’s operating budget, according to Mary Ann Porinchak, executive director.
There were other financial hurdles, including the delayed opening of the annual antique motorcycle exhibit; HVAC system failure in the Legacy Gallery; malfunction of an outdated fire alarm system; and the need to replace obsolete computer systems.
Unable to have events, the museum applied for funding to address issues with its aging facility, Porinchak says.
It obtained COVID-19 relief grants and an Ohio Humanities Emergency Grant. These funds went toward the replacement of the computer system, the upgrading of the security system, and the replacement of the HVAC system in Legacy Gallery.
Through gifts from donors, the museum removed diseased trees from its grounds, repaired brickwork and power washed the building. Contributions from the board enabled upgrading of the fire alarm system.
The museum, founded in 1989, preserves the legacy of the Packard family and the automobile manufacturing company it started.
Museum accomplishments in 2021 include the creation of several promotional videos and being featured in Packard International magazine.
Six educational programs were held, plus three car club luncheons and a motorcycle exhibitor reception. Fifteen car clubs and several scout groups made the museum their tour destination.
The museum invested in its education mission by hiring a community outreach coordinator who will work to make the facility attractive to younger audiences.