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A Year to Remember

How to encompass a year that has exceeded all expectations? Since March 28, 2009, when UMMA reopened after a dramatic expansion and restoration of its historic facility, the Museum has welcomed more than 250,000 visitors, engaged hundreds of students and scholars in its object-study classrooms, hosted tens of thousands of participants in educational programs and events, and in the process has become a new campus and community landmark. The new Maxine and Stuart Frankel and the Frankel Family Wing and the transformed Alumni Memorial Hall have truly become a vibrant meeting place for the arts. Take the lid off the Museum on any given day and you’ll witness the bustle of an extraordinary and exhilarating cultural crossroads—exhibition talks and tours throughout the building; film, dance, and renowned visiting writers and artists sharing their work in the Helmut Stern Auditorium; student performers and a new jazz series in the Commons; UM courses in the classrooms; concerts brought to life through the beautiful acoustics of the Apse; and art-making opportunities for all ages in the Multipurpose Room.

Among the many comments visitors have shared with us over the last year are the following: “I enjoy coming to the Museum as a rest from the everyday grind”; “Love the openness of the Museum and that it’s part of the community”; “The Museum feels very warm and welcoming”; “Rates among the best museums I’ve seen”; “Keep up the excellent work!”

On April 1, 2010, more than 900 University of Michigan students took part in 1 Year, Many Voices, a celebratory evening organized by the Museum’s Student Programming and Advisory Board that featured student responses to particular works of art at the Museum and highlighted student engagement throughout the reopening year.

It’s thanks to you, our visitors and supporters, UM students and administration, and our wonderful program partners across campus and the region that the Museum has become such a dynamic and vital part of the fabric of this community.

Stephanie Rieke Miller
External Relations Manager and Senior Writer