Executive director says work on cyclorama likely will begin in 2023

FARMINGTON — The main attraction at the Aztec Museum & Pioneer Village quickly will be up and jogging once again, thanks to a latest grant the establishment has obtained from a Colorado-based mostly corporation.

Museum officials announced before this 7 days they had received a $1,450 grant from the Greenwood Fund of the Denver Foundation. The money will be utilised to employ the service of a mechanical engineer to rebuild the motor that powers the museum’s “Pecos West” clyclorama, a 3,000-pound, rotating Southwestern landscape display screen featuring additional than 100 hand-carved parts.

Joan Hamblen Monninger, the museum’s executive director, explained the cyclorama broke down frequently this yr despite the work of board member Jack Scott to maintain it operating. “Pecos West” was built in the 1960s by World War II veteran Vallentry Zaharek and donated to the museum in 2015, when it last was restored.

Monninger mentioned she wasn’t sure what was heading to be necessary to get the piece operating effectively again, considering the fact that it has not been examined by a mechanical engineer nevertheless. She did she believes the casters want to be changed, since the cyclorama was producing a grinding sounds when it stopped turning.

The grant from the Denver Basis was only fifty percent the volume the Aztec Museum asked for, but Monninger stated her institution also gained an working grant from the Town of Aztec earlier this calendar year that it can use to support repair the piece, as nicely. The Denver Foundation’s Greenwood Fund offers grants to nonprofit museums in New Mexico, Colorado and Wyoming for jobs created to protect and treatment for artifacts and collections.

She stated work on the job probably will get started early in 2023.

"Pecos West," a rotating, 3,000-pound cyclorama depicting Southwestern scenes, was built in the 1960s by World War II veteran Vallentry Zaharek.

“We’ll see who we can have take a appear at it and what is wanted to rebuild it,” she claimed.

The funds also will be employed for other projects at the museum. Monninger stated the institution’s 1927 Product TT truck demands to be cleaned and repaired. Museum officials would like to return it to operating ailment, she mentioned, so they can generate it in area parades.