Children's Museum re-opens eight months after fire - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Children's Museum re-opens eight months after fire

By Crystal Price - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - It is hard to believe it has been eight months since a fire destroyed the Children's Museum in downtown Lake Charles.

But months of hard work and donations have paid off as this week the museum is opening their doors once again.

"It is such a blessing to be able to open up to the kids again," says Allyson Montgomery, Assistant Director for the Children's Museum.

Workers at the Children's Museum says this week's opening is an ultimate comeback after the a fire destroyed the museum on April 22nd.

"Right after the fire it was pretty gray and dismal," says Montgomery. "Everything was covered with black soot and it was just dark and dreary."

Although the fire left the museum in need of much repair, today it is a completely different atmosphere thanks to help from the community.

"The first floor received the most damage," says Montgomery. "But it's been totally renovated from top to bottom now."

The top two floors are also newly constructed.

"The second floor of the museum is pretty much the same as it was before," says Montgomery. "It is just a whole lot nicer."

Believe it or not, a few things were surprisingly salvageable after the fire.

"I couldn't believe the train layout survived the fire," says Montgomery. "The guys were able to salvage every single part of it and put it all back together again."

While the museum might be back in the rhythm of things for now, officials say they still have a long way to go.

One portion of the first floor is still under renovation.

"We have design plans for those areas, we just need the funding," says Montgomery.

Now the museum is asking for donations from the community to keep a good thing going for the kids.

"It needs to be kept going," says Alana Barnett, a visitor of the museum. "It's very educational and fun at the same time. A lot of the exhibits that they have explain what they are teaching, and it also gives kids fun things to learn too."

Although they are still in need, the museum is happy to service what they have now to the children of the lake area.

If you would like to help out the museum, donations can be mailed directly to the museum at 327 Broad street.

Donations can also be dropped off at any Cameron State Bank or Midsouth Bank Branch.

Copyright 2009 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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