Star of the Republic Museum thanks military families for their service.
May 27 – Sept. 2, 2013
More than 1,800 museums are participating in Blue Star Museum free admission program.
Star of the Republic Museum administered by Blinn College will show its appreciation for members of the U.S. armed forces this summer by offering free admission to active duty military personnel and their families between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
Free admission to all sites at Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site
will be offered May 27 – Sept. 2 as part of the Blue Star Museums program,
a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the U.S. Department of Defense and more than 1,800 museums nationwide.
“Our museum is proud to be part of Blue Star Museums,
which gives us a chance to thank our military families for their service
and share with them our love of Texas history,”
said Star of the Republic Museum Director Houston McGaugh.
The program is open to any bearer of a Geneva Convention common access card, a DD Form 1173 ID card or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card, which includes active U.S. military as well as members of the National Guard and Reserve, U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps and the NOAA Commissioned Corps. Up to five family members will also be admitted free of charge.
“We are thrilled with the continued growth of the program,”
said Blue Star Families CEO Kathy Roth-Douquet.
“Through this distinctive collaboration, service members and their families can connect with our national treasures with this unparalleled opportunity to visit some of the country’s finest museums for free.”
Blue Star Families is a national, nonprofit network of military families from all ranks and services, including guard and reserve, with a mission to support, connect and empower military families.
A complete listing of museums participating in the Blue Star program is available here: www.arts.gov/bluestarmuseums .
Star of the Republic Museum is located at Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site off state Highway 105. It was created by the Texas Legislature and is administered by Blinn College as a cultural and educational institution. Daily museum hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 936-878-2461 or visit: www.starmuseum.org .
New exhibit to bring nostalgic fun to Star of the Republic Museum
features 16 giant, interactive folk toys
with designs dating back 300 years
The exhibit will open in time for Memorial Day weekend
(May 25) and run through Aug. 31.
Star of the Republic Museum administered by Blinn College will bring toys from yesteryear to the Brazos Valley this summer with an exhibit that tumbles, slides, rocks, dances and spins.
Visitors are encouraged to play with the exhibit of 16 large-scale versions of popular historic folk toys from around the world, including “Jacob’s Ladder,” “Whimmy Diddle,” “Bird on a Pole,” “Acrobat,” “Tight Rope Walker” and “Pecking Chickens.” The toys from times gone by are crafted from wood and are reminiscent of traditional folk art.
While some of the designs date back as far as 300 years, these handcrafted versions stand as tall as six feet.
Designed by craftsman and former furniture maker Tom Wilson of Museum Productions, the toys represent Wilson’s nearly 40-year hobby making folk toys for his children and friends.
“This is a highly interactive exhibit,” said Wilson, former exhibit director at SciWorks Science Center in Winston-Salem, N.C.
“You’re pulling and jumping, and even if you’re not participating it’s fun to watch the kids. About 25 or 30 people can be physically involved with the exhibit at one time, so when a class comes through they can all participate.”
Wilson has exhibited the larger-than-life toys in Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina and South Carolina, but the Star of the Republic exhibit marks the first time he has taken “Toy Time” west of the Mississippi River. He said he wanted to create an exhibit that evokes a simpler period, when children could entertain themselves without video games and electricity.
“Nowadays it’s hard to find a toy that’s not electronic,” Wilson said. “When we get feedback, the kids tell us they’re skeptical at first, but they really enjoy themselves. These toys are just as fun now as they were 100 or 200 years ago.”
Star of the Republic Museum is located at Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site off state Highway 105. It was created by the Texas Legislature and is administered by Blinn College as a cultural and educational institution. Daily museum hours are 10am to 5pm. For more information, call 936-878-2461 or visit: www.starmuseum.org
H-E-B presents the 14th Annual
Fireworks on the Brazos!
4th of July
Fireworks display choreographed to patriotic tunes!
Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historical site is the place to bring your family this July Fourth.
The “Birthplace of Texas” has a full day of fun activities planned to celebrate our nation’s independence, capped off by a remarkable fireworks extravaganza, choreographed to your favorite patriotic tunes.
Start the day by visiting the site’s three main attractions:
• Independence Hall, where the Texas Declaration of Independence was signed in 1836;
• Barrington Farm, an 1850’s era cotton farm, and the original home of Texas’ last president, Anson Jones;
• The Star of the Republic Museum, the only institution of its kind, telling the story of the time in history when Texas was a sovereign nation. Children will love the special Toy Time exhibit currently on display at the museum. Sixteen large scale versions of historic folk toys from around the world are available for interactive play. “Jacob’s Ladder”, “Bird on a Pole” and “Pecking Chickens” to name just a few. The exhibit runs through August 31.
Festival Food Vendors will be on hand all day, with special, free, activities beginning in the evening.
Children will be invited to participate in 1800’s period games, beginning at 5:00 p.m. Cool off with some free Blue Bell Ice Cream and Coca-Cola products at 5:30. At 7:15, head to the amphitheater for a free special concert by Tubie and the Touchtones, a band from Navasota, the Blues Capitol of Texas.
Finally, the highlight of the evening is a fifteen minute fireworks extravaganza. The display begins at approximately 9:15. It will also be simulcast on KTEX 106 Sounds Like Texas. So, bring your radio, blanket, and lawn chairs and enjoy this Free Fireworks-on-the-Brazos Celebration, made possible by our presenting sponsor, H-E-B.
Free shuttle buses will be available to bring visitors from satellite parking areas to the Visitor Center, beginning at noon, and ending at 8:00
Admission to the park is free, but some tour fees apply.
This event is made possible by donations from H-E-B, Brenham National Bank, Blue Bell Ice Cream, Coca-Cola Refreshments, Del Sol Foods, Germania Insurance, KTEX/KWHI, Kolkhorst Petroleum, and the Washington County Convention & Visitor’s Bureau.
Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historical Site is located halfway between Brenham and Navasota off State Hwy. 105, on FM 1155, approximately one hour northwest of Houston.
23400 Park Road 12, Washington, Texas 77880
Directions are available on our Location page or for more information call 936-878-2214.
State park rules apply; alcohol is prohibited.
Saving History Thru Art - For the Love of Texas
This coffee table style book, a generous 12” x 18” size, contains a series of spectacular spring landscapes photographed in Washington County, Texas, by noted Smithsonian photographer Timothy Wolcott. Each photograph is accompanied by a personal comment from one of 36 Texas celebrities stating his or her love for the state.
Books may be purchased at the Washington County Visitor Center, 115 West Main Street, in Brenham, or ordered online at www.loveoftexas175.com
This is a project to honor the 59 individuals who put their lives on hold to declare independence and form the Republic of Texas in March 1836. Proceeds benefit the Washington-on-the-Brazos State Park Association.
We offer prints of some of these incredible landscape photographs.
The prints available will be hand-signed by famous Texans,
including Presidents and First Ladies,
Governors, sports heroes, authors and other famous Texans.
Watch this space for future book signings and other special events highlighting both the book
and autographed oversize images reproduced on museum paper or canvas.
Visit our monthly Event Calendar to see a graphic calendar of our events.
To read about some of our events you may have missed, see Past Events.