A LIW WEEKEND IN GREEN BAY, WI
Last weekend I had a great experience at the Heritage Hill State Historical Park in Green Bay, WI. Heritage Hill invited me to come in order to help them celebrate Laura Ingalls Wilder Day. Other special guests included William Anderson, the very talented writer and Beth Ingalls-Leisses who is a living relative of Charles Ingalls. Over 3,000 people gathered at Heritage Hill last saturday and broke the museum’s attendance record, which was set last year on the previous Laura Ingalls Wilder Day. The fact of the record breaking day is nice, but what made it even better was that the record was broken competing head to head with the first 2009 training camp practice of the Green Bay Packers, only miles away. In a city like Green Bay, which is more than a little obsessed with the Packers, that was pretty cool. It truly amazes and touches me that so many people continue to love our series and the books on which they were based.
My involvement with Laura’s world began 30 years ago and it has been an honor to be joined with so many others who preserve and celebrate her stories focused around the challenges and romance of a family struggling to survive America’s great western movement. The more I learn about Laura and her life I am increasingly impressed by her desire to turn a life filled with hardship and tragedy into one that has inspired and enriched people of all ages for more than seven decades.
While I was on-site at Heritage Hill I had the opportunity to join Bill and Beth in four different gatherings of visitors in order to speak, sign autographs and answer questions. In advance of the event I prepared a brief Legacy Documentaries DVD that included the romance segment from Almanzo Wilder: Life Before Laura, brief clips from LHOP bonus content, as well as a tease for Legacy’s next Little House documentary project, The Life Story of Laura Ingalls Wilder. The reaction was wonderful. Look for it 2nd quarter of 2010. I’ll be talking much more about this project in the months ahead.
After the event was over we started talking about what we could do next at Heritage Hil…a lot of good ideas came out, including one for the entire family that will connect holiday music and spoken word. I’ll share more when its all locked in place.
Hope everyone is having a great summer.