It’s hard to stay closed during Phase II of reopening our beautiful oceanfront to visitors, but as small, indoor facility, this is the best way to stay safe. As you know, COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving situation. Please know that your health and safety is our highest priority. To help minimize the potential spread of the coronavirus with our community, the museum will be closed until it is deemed safe to reopen. The museum has also canceled all public programming. We will continue to monitor the situation and follow the recommendations of the WHO, the CDC, The Virginia Department of Health, and the City of Virginia Beach.
As I am updating this information, Johns Hopkins reports the US has currently lost over 100,000 souls to the virus. Our thoughts and prayers continue for the dead and for their loved ones.
WHAT CLOSING MEANS TO THE MUSEUM
Not being able to open for the usually busy Summer season brings a heavy financial burden to our small nonprofit. As we look to slowly establish safe guidelines for reopening the museum, social distancing guidelines prevent us from sharing our Ghost Walk programming, and other planned party and rental programs. We’ve had to reduce staff and trim expenses to bare monthly minimums to work on getting through these long months. We’ve received some funding through the Small Business Administration’s PPP program, and continue to explore other grant options open to nonprofits. As always, we thank the City of Virginia Beach for their support for our upcoming fiscal year.
It is urgent that the museum raises the funds to see us through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Regardless of how difficult 2020 has become, we remain optimistic that we will continue to grow and develop this amazing historic icon’s mission and place in the community. We have already established new virtual tours and are working at expanding our online educational programming as well as growing our important work with our Oral History Project. Let’s work together to ensure the museum will be opening as soon as we can.
William Hazel – Executive Director