Durham Museum will host Grand Finale of NE 150 Photo Exhibit, "Bridges"


PRESS RELEASE | November 20, 2017

Contact Person – Kim Einspahr | Hildegard Center for the Arts
(402) 416.8650 or keinspahr@windstream.net 

The historic Durham Museum in Omaha—801 S. 10th Street—will host the final stop of the Hildegard-sponsored Sesquicentennial Traveling Photo Exhibit  “Bridges: Sharing Our Past to Enrich the Future”—November 24, 2017 through January 7, 2018. The entire collection of 93 winning photos will be featured during the popular Christmas at Union Station annual celebration.

Christmas hours at Union Station are as follows:

  •  Monday 10AM to 5PM; Tuesday-10AM to 8PM; Wednesday-Saturday 10AM to 5PM; Sunday- 1 to 5PM
  • Admission: Adults $11, Seniors $8, Children (3-12) $7, Members and children 2 & under are free.  For more information, visit DurhamMuseum.org.

Sunday, December 3rd, will be a free admission day from 1-5PM.  Many of the Bridges committee members and photographers will be present in the gallery from 2-4pm to meet with guests and celebrate the grand finale of this yearlong exhibit. The winning photographers have also been invited to the December 3rd event. 

The Bridges photo exhibit is endorsed by Nebraska 150 Commission as a “Signature Event,” and has traveled to seven regions throughout Nebraska in honor of the state’s 150th Sesquicentennial celebration. The project was a collaborative led by Hildegard Center for the Arts and the Nebraska Tourism Commission and Nebraska State Historical Society.  In 2015, the three organizations issued a statewide photocall to amateur and professional photographers alike, inviting them to capture images of historic sites or hidden treasures located across Nebraska. Over 800 photo submissions were received.

Ninety-three photographs, one from each county, were selected and represent a cross-section of Nebraska. The Durham Museum in Omaha marks the final stop of this celebrated exhibit. Quote—“As Nebraska’s Sesquicentennial year comes to a close, what a fitting venue for an exhibit that has linked history, generations and cultures as it has traversed this beautiful state”—Bridges project chair, Cathy Harrington.


See complete tour schedule:

  • Great Plains Art Museum in Lincoln: January 6 - March 25, 2017
  • Gallery 92 West in Fremont: April 4 – April 29, 2017
  • Seward Civic Center: June 1 - July 28, 2017
  • North Platte Prairie Arts Center: August 1 - September 22, 2017
  • Norfolk Art Center: September 7 - October 26, 2017
  • Carnegie Arts Center in Alliance: September 26 - November 10, 2017
  • Durham Museum in Omaha: November 24, 2017 - January 7, 2018


Serving as jurors for the Bridges Photo Call were Joel Sartore (National Geographic Magazine and NEBRASKAland Magazine); UNL Professor Emeritus George Tuck; and Bobbi and Steve Olson (contributors to Nebraska Life Magazine,)

The winning photos are featured in a digital catalog together with a virtual tour of all submitted photographs located at the Hildegard Center’s website www.hildegardcenter.org.

Also developed is a collection of Instructional Resources—ninety-three –to enhance Nebraska’s fourth-grade social studies curriculum. With assistance from the University of Nebraska at Omaha, a story map was also devised to give teachers/students access the instructional resources of a county via a virtual Nebraska map. The photos, instructional resources, and the story map can be accessed free of charge at the Hildegard Center’s website ‪www.hildegardcenter.org.  


The Omaha World-Herald has included all winning photographs and narratives in its published book titled “NEBRASKA: 150 YEARS TOLD THROUGH 93 COUNTIES,” available in stores and/or at the website www.owhstore.com. In 2017, the Nebraska Tourism Commission featured fourteen of the winning photos in its statewide calendar. Additional submitted photos will be highlighted NTC’s upcoming 2018 calendar.


The Bridges Sesquicentennial Traveling Photo Exhibit is supported in part by Humanities Nebraska and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment with the support of the Nebraska Sesquicentennial Commission and the following Statewide Sponsors; Johnson Hardware Company; the Ethel S. Abbott Charitable Foundation; and University of Nebraska at Omaha. For Regional Exhibit Sponsors and to learn more about the project, visit www.hildegardcenter.org.


Bridges Project Committee members: Cathy Harrington—Project Chair, Alexandra Alberda, Angela Carroll, Kim Einspahr, Jenn Gjerde, Rita Kean, Erin Lenz, Bob Puschendorf, Marilyn Stadler, Angela Sears, Donna Williams, Anne Woita


Bridges Educational Sub-Committee members: Donna Williams—Project Chair, Rita Kean, Cathy Harrington, Kim Einspahr and Anne Woita (Hildegard Center for the Arts); Bob Puschendorf and Sharon Kennedy (Nebraska State Historical Society); Harris Payne (State Department of Education); Paul Hunt (University of Nebraska at Omaha) and Ann Billesbach. 




Norfolk Arts Center/ Denice Hansen, Executive Director

“The Norfolk Arts Center was so honored to host our region's portion of the "Bridges" exhibit. I believe the show was a beautiful marriage of art and history - education and entertainment - and a clear result of the hard work and dedication from the Hildegard Center for the Arts. The public responded with equal enthusiasm and appreciation for the works on display. “


Carnegie Art Center in Alliance/ Kyren Conley Executive Director

"It was evident from our patrons' reactions that just the existence of an exhibit like this registered deeply in the hearts of fellow Nebraska residents.  People came from all around the panhandle and greater Nebraska, specifically to Alliance just to view the show.  A usual quick tour around the gallery for other exhibits turned into half an hour for guests viewing Bridges.  Walking slowly, our patrons poured over every photograph and the details of its parent county.  When a person would find their county photograph, you could see the excitement and pride swell in them.   This was not just a just an exhibit but a symbol of the love our residents have for their county, their state, and the place they call home." I would guess around 200 in two months. 


North Platte Prairie Art Center / Holly Carlini, Executive Director


“The Bridges Exhibit was a beautiful display of the rich history of Nebraska.  The exhibit allowed viewers to be submerged in the landscape of each county...and it really took some viewers down memory lane as they sat and reminisced over a memory that a picture sparked.  It was a joy to watch the exhibit take on new meaning to each person who visited. “



The Great Plains Art Museum –Lincoln/ Melynda Seaton, Director & Curator


“As part of the sesquicentennial celebration in 2017, the exhibition provided a unique and important opportunity for Nebraskans to share their vision of the state through photography. The Great Plains Art Museum was honored to be a collaborator in the project by hosting the inaugural installation of the photographs. We had an exceptional turnout and received many positive remarks about the exhibition.“



Hildegard Center for the Arts (HCFA) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization founded in 2009.  Its mission is “to unite people of all beliefs, cultures and traditions to inspire humanity through the Arts.” HCFA partners with organizations and communities to provide opportunities in the visual and performing arts and educational outreach.

The Sesquicentennial Traveling Photo Exhibit “Bridges: Sharing our Past to Enrich the Future” is part of a three-year “Bridges” initiative at Hildegard Center for the Arts to connect people of all ages and walks of life. To learn more, visit www.hildegardcenter.org.


Office headquarters for Hildegard Center for the Arts is located in Old City Hall, 920 “O” St., Suite 1, Lincoln, Nebraska 68508. (402) 416-8650


Created in 1973 as a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, Humanities Nebraska is an independent, nonprofit organization governed by a volunteer board of public and academic members. HN funds programs that explore Nebraska’s heritage, build community awareness and strengthen ties to cultural traditions at home and abroad. The Nebraska Cultural Endowment is a public/private partnership that designates funds to HN for distribution. Any nonprofit group is eligible to apply for a grant from HN. The HN staff is available for grant consultation and will read proposal drafts. The Humanities Nebraska office is located at 215 Centennial Mall South, Suite 330, Lincoln, NE 68508.



 On March 1, 2017, the State of Nebraska will celebrate its Sesquicentennial or 150th year of statehood. Planning is underway to commemorate this historic occasion with a yearlong celebration that will engage, educate and inspire the state’s citizenry while leaving a legacy for future generations.


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