Our culture is memorialized at an actual High Desert Museum.  It’s located a short distance south of downtown Bend, Oregon.  I paid a visit last year after getting a recommendation from a friend.  Twin Falls even gets a good nod when it comes to a famous effort by Evel Knieval to jump the Snake River.  I didn’t know until a few days ago that the museum is affiliated with the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C.

The Museum is a Treasure

My visit kept me occupied for almost a couple of hours.  There are old trucks, pictures, paintings, and even some live animal exhibits.  I was looking at some owls and told a guide the animatronics were impressive.  She gave me a look like I was a high desert yokel.  “They’re real,” she deadpanned.

Much of Oregon was under a serious lockdown when I was there.  It hasn’t helped with the museum's bottom line.  It kept people away.  I had to schedule my visit in advance during 2020 because of social distancing requirements.  The museum regulated foot traffic and it cut down on the number of visitors.  At ten dollars a head for non-senior adults, it adds up after a while.

Some of our infamous birds! Picture by Bill Colley.
Some of our infamous birds! Picture by Bill Colley.
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Cuddly pets of the high desert on display. Picture by Bill Colley.
Cuddly pets of the high desert on display. Picture by Bill Colley.
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Indigenous culture is remembered. Picture by Bill Colley.
Indigenous culture is remembered. Picture by Bill Colley.
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Keep the Museum Doors Open

The museum is seeking donations.  You can help by clicking here.  If you love history, this is a good way to show appreciation.  Financial planners will also tell you charitable contributions at the end of the year can assist you when it comes to tax time.

This is history worth preserving.  As the region becomes more and more populated with new housing developments (a new town is planned between Boise and Mountain Home) we’re going to lose some of the past.  The High Desert Museum is a keeper of the flame.

Leaders of a bygone era. Picture by Bill Colley.
Leaders of a bygone era. Picture by Bill Colley.
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War on horseback and armored. Picture by Bill Colley.
War on horseback and armored. Picture by Bill Colley.
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No internet connection, no TV and a bit drafty when the wind blows. Picture by Bill Colley.
No internet connection, no TV and a bit drafty when the wind blows. Picture by Bill Colley.
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An early green form of transport. Picture by Bill Colley.
An early green form of transport. Picture by Bill Colley.
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More modern travel. Picture by Bill Colley.
More modern travel. Picture by Bill Colley.
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