Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital becomes new presenting sponsor

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Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at St. Vincent has become a new presenting sponsor of Conner Prairie for 2017.

Staff Report
Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at St. Vincent has become a new presenting sponsor of Conner Prairie for 2017, supporting the museum’s summer day camps, programming to encourage youth and families to explore nature and messaging to help promote healthy lives in the central Indiana community. Continue reading

New-look Baby Playspace now open inside Discovery Station

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A new Baby Playspace debuted Thursday inside Discovery Station at Conner Prairie.

Staff report
There’s a new and improved Baby Playspace inside Discovery Station at Conner Prairie. The new space now features sensory toys, books, mirrors and more for babies and their grownups to interact with.

The team that worked on the project has been working on the updates to the area since December.

Exhibit Developer Cathy Donnelly said the new play area was created based on guest feedback from a survey sent to visitors last fall fall. Parents asked for more sensory toys, interactive options and colorful décor, among other things. Continue reading

Waffle bar, array of toppings new this year at Breakfast with the Easter Bunny

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New this year at Breakfast with the Easter Bunny will be a waffle bar with a wide assortment of toppings.

Staff report
This year, guests will notice something new when enjoying Conner Prairie brunches, such as the upcoming Breakfast with the Easter Bunny this Saturday – a build-your-own waffle bar. This is the first time the museum has offered a waffle bar.

Special Events Manager Don Wilderson said the waffles will be prepared by a waffle chef at a station. Then guests will be able to top their waffles however they’d like.

A variety of assorted fruits, syrups, whipped cream and powdered sugar will be available. Continue reading

A master of restoration: Creativity favorite part of Keith Thomas’ job

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Keith Thomas has worn many hats during his 28 years at Conner Prairie. Currently, he works as historic maintenance technician, taking care of exhibits throughout the museum.

By Hannah Kiefer
When people look around Conner Prairie, there are few things that exhibit and historic maintenance technician Keith Thomas hasn’t worked on.

For 28 years, he has worked in a number of roles, as a carpenter in Prairietown, a naturalist, a camp director and now, as the person who makes sure all exhibits stay in good condition.

Thomas helped build most of the elements of Discovery Station – including a Treetop Outpost-inspired dollhouse – and he said the only things he really hasn’t worked on are the technological elements in Civil War Journey. Continue reading

Rare English Longhorn calf born just in time for opening day

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An English Longhorn calf was recently born at Conner Prairie, the result of an embryo transfer procedure not performed in the U.S. since 1993.

By Hannah Kiefer
Spring at Conner Prairie means the arrival of baby animals in Animal Encounters. And this year, there’s an extra-special delivery – an incredibly rare English Longhorn calf, born of a Shorthorn cow that served as a surrogate.

About 9 months ago, a 7-day-old embryo was shipped from England in liquid nitrogen to keep it cool. Upon arrival, it was implanted into one of Conner Prairie’s Shorthorn cows at an offsite facility – the first time such a procedure has been done with an English Longhorn in the U.S. since 1993.

The calf brings Conner Prairie’s English Longhorn herd to 11. There are only about 40 members of the breed in the U.S. and and Conner Prairie has the second-largest herd in the nation. Continue reading