Dowagiac Area History Museum gearing up to host annual fundraiser

Published 2:03 pm Tuesday, September 7, 2021

DOWAGIAC — A local history museum is gearing up for the return of one of its biggest fundraisers.

The Dowagiac Area History Museum’s fourth annual Keep History Alive Fundraiser is back after a COVID-induced absence in 2020. The fundraiser will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 22 at Marion Magnolia Farms, 57376 Twin Lakes Rd., Cassopolis.

The event is open to the public. Tickets cost $30 in advance, $40 at the door and can be purchased at the museum or call the museum to purchase via credit card. Ticket purchases include a barbecue dinner from Wood, Stock and Grill, 17649 U.S. 12 New Buffalo. There will also be a cash bar.

The fundraiser was created in 2017 as a way for the museum to raise general operation support and reach its fundraising goals for each year.

The event will feature silent auctions as well as a live auction. The auctions will include tickets to college sporting events, such as Michigan and Notre Dame football tickets. Gift certificates and goods from area businesses will also be auctioned off, Alice Lewis artwork, local antiques not from the museum’s collection, local history artifacts and more.

The event typically raises $20,000 for the museum, according to museum director Steve Arseneau.

“We have had great support over the years from the community,” he said. “From both the business community and museum supporters who have donated items for auction. We were worried; a lot of businesses got hammered last year but have really stepped up with gift baskets donated for the auction and things like that.”

While the previous three KHA fundraisers have been held at the Elks Lodge, the museum decided to make a move this year due to an increase in event attendance year over year.

“The Elks is a great community partner,” Arseneau said. The lodge has been very generous with us. We outgrew that space a bit and wanted to get larger venue. Marion Magnolia Farms is a beautiful venue and think it is going to be fantastic for this event.”

Arseneau appreciates the support the museum has received over the years and hopes the community will enjoy this year’s fundraiser.

“This museum is the only professionally-operated museum in the [Cass County],” he said. “This fundraiser helps us to continue to offer good services to community. Through programming, school tours and new exhibits. Dowagiac is a generous community. We’ve been supported well over the years and we greatly appreciate it.”

Visit for information on the event and the auction catalog or call the museum at (269) 783-2560.