Cookeville museums create online ‘quarantine content’

COOKEVILLE – New things are happening in Cookeville’s museums – even though the doors remain closed.

Adjusting to social distancing challenges, Cookeville History Museum and Cookeville Depot Museum staff members have come up with online ways to stay connected with local history lovers who are temporarily unable to visit amid COVID-19 virus precautions.

“The city museums are hoping to help provide some engaging online ‘quarantine content’ that can help families stay busy with educational activities that are also fun,” Beth Thompson, Cookeville museums manager, said.

Cookeville History Museum activities include Artifact of the Week, which consists of weekly photos of historic items and descriptions to be posted on the museum’s social media pages, as well as a revival of last summer’s popular “I Spy Cookeville” exhibit.

“We’ll be uploading the exhibit on our Facebook page, one image at a time,” Thompson said. “Kids of all ages can spend time hunting for different historic items from our photo collages.”

Pam Philpot, museums’ exhibit specialist, added, “It’ll be just like the exhibit – exactly what we had on the walls, just in digital format.”

At the Cookeville Depot Museum, “Engineer Ashley” McKee, museums education specialist, will continue to offer Train Tales, an activity for preschoolers, at its usual time on Fridays at 10:30 a.m. – except it will take place live on the Cookeville Depot Museum’s Facebook page. An additional Train Tales craft video will be posted on Friday afternoon.

McKee said that while Train Tales is typically geared toward preschoolers, the online version can involve the whole family. She’s also keeping things simple, with limited steps and few supplies needed.

“This week I’ll show how to draw a train in six easy steps,” she said.

For more information, call the history museum at 520-5455 or the depot at 528-8570.

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