A Message from our Executive Director and President & CEO:
Since our founding in 1939, the membership of this museum has consistently demonstrated that, through collaboration and teamwork, great challenges can be overcome. With this enduring spirit, we have decided that the health and safety of our community requires that we change the way we operate over the next few months.
Seashore Trolley Museum’s Opening Day is currently scheduled for Saturday, May 2, 2020. Volunteers and staff have worked hard all off-season to prepare; before the pandemic, 61% of our 2020 operating budget was projected to come from our railroad operations for the general public and our special events this season. We will continue to monitor local, regional and national news for updates and may push back our Opening Day if needed, as we are unwilling to jeopardize the health and well-being of any of our members or guests. The decision on whether to delay our opening will be made mid-April.
We have asked volunteers, many of whom are from populations at high risk for COVID-19, to stay home for the time-being to preserve their health. Employees will continue to report to work with precautions being taken to protect their health.
The Governor of Maine has called for social gatherings of more than 50 people to be postponed and for gatherings of more than 10 people that include groups at higher risk to be canceled. Seashore Trolley Museum has made the decision to reschedule all in-person committee and department meetings until after May 2nd. Departments and committees are encouraged to meet or connect virtually.
If you are showing signs of illness or if you have been directed to self-isolate due to personal exposure, please do not visit the Museum and follow CDC guidelines for the amount of time you should wait to return to a public place before returning to campus.
Those wishing to connect with Museum employees are encouraged to schedule a time to converse over the phone.
The Restoration Shop is currently closed to volunteers to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. This policy will be reassessed weekly. All Museum volunteers are encouraged to work on Museum projects at home when necessary. However, to ensure the Museum is as ready for our Operating Season as we can be during this time, volunteers are welcome to complete work on campus if the work supports operations and if volunteers can practice social distancing while present. Departments included are Track, Operations, Facilities/Grounds, Yard, Signals, Overhead and the Safety Coordinator.
As of now, the Annual Meeting will still be held in person on Saturday, April 25th, and may change due to future CDC and State of Maine recommendations. Member shareholders are encouraged to vote via proxy to guarantee their participation in this year’s Election of Trustees. Proxy ballots are being mailed to member shareholders in good standing today. Our top member shareholders have committed to meeting in-person on April 25th to fulfill the requirements set forth in our Bylaws, and so that Society business is not interrupted.
We are closely following developments and will respond quickly as circumstances change. We also will be sending out our Annual Fund Appeal in the next few days; donations to our operating fund are especially appreciated in what we expect may be a difficult year financially. Thank you for your support and for helping us fulfill our mission during this global crisis.
James D. Schantz
President & CEO