Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Gitche Gumee Museum Re-organized

As promised in yesterday's post, today I'll include pictures I took yesterday while working the museum.  I had lots of time to do so since zero customers came in.  Although spring has sprung in Grand Marais, tourism is still very slow to start.  Other than fishermen, there are not many people in town.  I am sure it will pick up with the holiday weekend.

When you walk in the front door, you will see that I moved the counter over, built new shelves, re-located the Wheel of Treasure, and moved the bench down.

The new shelves...

In the south gift shop room I re-organized the inventory and simplified the room by eliminating a couple of the retail displays.

I also added a new retail display donated to the museum last year.  It is sitting in the corner.  The three tiers rotate to reveal a great variety of small tumbled and rough minerals.


From the start of the museum I turned around and snapped a photo of the gift shop.

Another new table in the south gift shop room is the Collector's Table.  I recently purchased a rock collection.  On a daily basis I will swap out new specimens for sale on this table.

While at the Quartzite show in January, I purchased quite a few flats of minerals.  Many of these flats are displayed on the new shelves in the north gift shop room.

I also have the most Lake Superior agates that I have ever had for sale, including a lot of high quality agates priced between $25 and $45 plus a few higher prices wowsers.

From the bench this is the view of the top of the counter and the first shelf.

Here is a photo of the first shelf of the counter, looking in the glass from the front.  There may not be any of the colorful polychrome jasper left in the original deposit, but I have a lot of it for sale.  In fact I have another box of polychrome specimens that would not fit in the cabinet.  This colorful variety was mined from three surface rock outcroppings.  They are now digging and still getting jasper, but they are calling it ribbon polychrome.  It is darker in color and does not have the random color splashes.  Instead the darker colors run more parallel.

Although I did not have any customers yesterday, friends Gerald and Jill stopped by.  When I walked them out to their car, we heard some beautiful birds singing in the lilac bush outside the museum.  Then we noticed the red coloring on the male bird.  I, of course, grabbed my camera and snapped some pictures.

I did research on the internet to identify the species.  From the webpage  I found out the following information:

"The House Finch Carpodacus mexicanus is a familiar sight in mid-Michigan today. These 6″, talkative little birds get their name from their habit of hanging around houses. They build their nests in the hanging baskets, wreaths, or in trees, and their cheery warble or a variety of chirps is a constant around the bird feeders. The amount of red the finch has can vary depending on the amount of carotenoid pigments consumed in its food during molt. They have slight white wing bands, a brownish red head with a pink chest that has brown streaking. They also appear to have a sleek body and stand tall."

Notice that the web page says "mid-Michigan."  From the webpage listed above, I clicked on the link for this bird, which led me to the webpage  Sure enough, the range on the map is for the lower peninsula of Michigan and not the U.P.  It appears that the range for this bird is spreading.

The male....

Below is a picture of the female.

The male was actually nibbling on the lilac bud.

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