LITTLE FALLS, Minn. — Road construction has meant hard times for the Minnesota Fishing Museum and Hall of Fame in Little Falls, and the site is in danger of closing its doors without an influx of money.
According to a news release from the Museum and Hall, Minnesota Highway 27, which runs in front of the building, was closed June 14, right before Father’s Day, one of the busiest weekends of the year for the Museum and Hall of Fame.
With decreased traffic, summer tourism is at an all-time low.
Complicating the picture, road construction in Little Falls began May 13 when the bridge over the Mississippi River was closed, and all traffic is being rerouted to the outskirts of town.
Road construction is expected to continue well into October, the news release said, and without summer tourist traffic, the Museum and Hall is facing a $35,000 deficit.
As a result, the Museum and Hall is asking for the public’s help.
“We have been financially self-reliant for the 21 years that we have been in existence,” according to the news release. “We find ourselves in a Catch-22. We have survived with a small operating budget that stems from memberships, fundraisers, gate admission, gift shop sales, donations and charitable gaming. We have not been able to grow without the proper advertising and marketing budget. We have had numerous guests who pull off Highway 27 after seeing our sign say, ‘We didn’t know there was a Minnesota Fishing Museum and Hall of Fame.’ ”
In an effort to overcome the financial shortfall, the Museum and Hall is seeking donations. Anyone donating $100 or more will be recognized on a Benefactor Anglers Plaque in the Museum and Hall and listed among benefactors on the Fishing Hall of Fame website.