Rockwell exhibit draws crowd in Craig |

Rockwell exhibit draws crowd in Craig

Opening day creates interest from Craig and beyond

Bridget Manley

Anne Carr, of Craig, looks at an exhibit Monday at the Museum of Northwest Colorado that features all 323 Saturday Evening Post covers illustrated by Norman Rockwell. The exhibit opened Monday and has garnered interest in and beyond Craig, museum staffers said.

— Craig residents Nina Lawton and Evelyn Pomeroy took their time Monday, studying each picture and the story it told.

"They are so realistic and so alive, and (there are) so many emotions going on in each picture," said Lawton, referring to the rows of Saturday Evening Post covers that hung in the Museum of Northwest Colorado in Craig.

Monday was opening day for a new exhibit featuring all 323 covers Norman Rockwell illustrated for the magazine during a period of almost five decades.

Lawton, 84, and Pomeroy, 77, weren't about to miss the display. They came to the museum for the sole purpose of seeing it.

"You bet," Lawton said.

The exhibit, which includes the original Norman Rockwell painting "Spirit of Education," is scheduled to remain on display through Sept. 28.

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A reception to kick off the exhibit is set for 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the museum, 590 Yampa Ave., with a ribbon-cutting scheduled for 5 p.m.

The ceremony, as well as admission to the exhibit, is free.

About 30 people visited the museum Monday morning, many drawn primarily by the exhibit, Assistant Director Janet Gerber said.

That number is unusually high for this time of year, Registrar Mary Pat Dunn said.

The exhibit also garnered interest from residents outside of Craig, including Olympic skier Billy Kidd, of Steamboat Springs. He called museum staff Monday to wish them luck on the exhibit's opening, and he plans to visit Craig soon to see the display, he said.

"I've always been a fan of (Rockwell's) since I was growing up in Vermont," which also was where Rockwell lived and painted for a time, Kidd said.

Although he doesn't know much about art, he recognizes what makes Rockwell's art appealing.

"I mainly like the fact that he captured so much of American life and the basics of why a lot of us like America," the 69-year-old said. "He seemed to capture these real basic ideas that resonate with so many people."

Lawton and Pomeroy's visit Monday won't be their last.

The exhibit is too large to absorb in just one day, they said, and they want to have time to muse over each magazine cover.

"It's worth the time and effort to come look at it," Pomeroy said.

If you go

What: Opening reception and ribbon cutting for Norman Rockwell exhibit

When: 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday; ribbon cutting at 5 p.m.

Where: Museum of Northwest Colorado, 590 Yampa Ave., in Craig

Cost: Free. Hors d’oeuvres will be served.

For more

The Museum of Northwest Colorado is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays. For more information, call the museum at 970-824-6360.