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Knock Knock Children's Museum assessing how to reopen as state moves into phase 2

1 year 11 months 3 weeks ago Monday, June 01 2020 Jun 1, 2020 June 01, 2020 5:00 PM June 01, 2020 in News
Source: WBRZ

UPDATE: The museum said Monday it is awaiting further guidance from the governor's office before it reopens in phase two. Staff said they expected the museum to back open "very soon."


BATON ROUGE - The Knock Knock Children's Museum is pretty quiet these days.

For now, exhibits are shuttered, and no children are at play. The only people walking through the doors are employees. 

Tactile exhibits are not included in "Phase One" of the Governor's reopening plan, which leaves hands-on-oriented museums out. Knock Knock's Executive Director Peter Claffey says with no one coming in to visit, they've lost 65 percent of their revenue stream.

"We're an optimistic bunch as far as children's museums, so we're hoping to get the doors open sooner rather than later," Claffey said. "We're probably going on 75 plus days without that revenue stream, and the spring school season is the busiest time for museums, so it's a very challenging time to be closed."

Thirty-five percent of the museum's revenue comes from donations. 

Claffey says these donations, along with funds from the Paycheck Protection Program, is what's keeping business running since the doors closed in March.

"This time that we're closed, we're not making any of those admissions dollars. Typically your revenue stockpiles as you go into the spring and into the early summer. Obviously, we're not doing that right now. We were fortunate to get PPP funding, and that sort of has backfilled us."

Though they’ve received these extra funds, Claffey says they'll be hard-pressed to make up for what they've lost. 

The museum has had to furlough 36 percent of its employees. It's an obstacle Claffey says he's confident they'll overcome. 

"We're an optimistic bunch as far as children's museums, so we're hoping to get the doors open sooner rather than later."

In just a couple weeks the governor will announce "phase two" of the reopening plan. Claffey is hopeful that children's museums will be able to open early summer. 

For more information on how to help the Knock Knock Children's museum, click here:http://knockknockmuseum.org/

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