“I personally think it is a blast,” said Cameron Walker, a firefighter with the Dumas Fire Department Friday evening.  He had just finished playing an historical Moore County firefighter at the annual “Night at the Museum” program put on by the staff and volunteers of the Window on the Plains Museum and The Art Center in Dumas designed to entertain local 4th graders and teach them Moore County history at the same time.  Walker’s colleague, Marshall Kelley, also got to play a firefighter from the past, and he echoed Walker:  “I enjoy it … watching the kids’  reactions is great.”

It was 4th graders from Sunset Elementary School on Friday night, and they were excited.  First, they sat in the classroom of The Art Center while Joan Criswell and Merna Pierce, volunteers with the museum, led them in singing historical songs and telling them stories of the early days of Moore County.  Then, teachers with flashlights led the children, one small group at a time, into the almost completely darkened museum.  As they walked through the museum, lighted figures would emerge out of the darkness to tell a variety of historical stories.  There was a woman in a ranch house cooking dinner, a blacksmith, cowboys around a campfire, World War II soldiers, a doctor, a man repairing a windmill, women singing in a tent church, people playing games in a parlor, a man sitting beside a camper, a woman running a general store, and many others.  The children, an incredibly diverse group, expressed surprise and delight as each tableaux was lit up, and they listened intently to the stories.

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