County Museum Honored with Four National Awards for Exceptional Virtual Events

By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)– The County museum is the recipient of four 2021 National Association of Counties (NACo) Achievement Awards, recognizing the museum’s programs in the Arts, Culture and Historic Preservation category for Arthropolooza: The Ultimate Bugfest; Developing Ethnobotany: Creative Collaboration and Indigenous Stories; Museum Programs Gone Virtual; and Science Spooktacular: Demystifying Science for our County Families.

The NACo Achievement Award Program recognizes innovative county government programs throughout the nation. The awards are even more impressive given they are programs offered during the pandemic.

The San Bernardino County Museum received an award for Arthropolooza: The Ultimate Bugfest, an annual program that focuses on the diversity of arthropods in the region and their ecological roles and significance to our environment.

The second award was for the Developing Ethnobotany: Creative Collaboration and Indigenous Stories project which is in collaboration with native people and their telling of indigenous stories in order to more effectively connect the public to the Museum’s ethnobotany spaces.

The third award was for Museum Programs Gone Virtual. The COVID-19 pandemic halted onsite museum programming since with temporary closure in March 2020. Our educational public service meant that maintaining communication and connecting with the county’s over 2 million residents would be crucial during this ongoing health crisis. From March 2020 through February 2021 the museum pivoted six regularly scheduled annual and quarterly onsite programs to the virtual environment.

The fourth award was for Science Spooktacular: Demystifying Science for our County Families which is meant to help demystify science and build science literacy in our county.

“We are thrilled to be the recipient of four NACo awards this year,” said Museum Director Melissa Russo. “I’m incredibly proud of the museum staff who rose above the challenges of the pandemic closure to continue to serve our county residents. It has been heartwarming to see residents with children drive up for activity kits and express so much appreciation for our continued presence with these virtual events.”

NACo is dedicated to advancing excellence in public service to help people and places thrive across America. The NACo Achievement Awards honor counties which are innovatively working to strengthen services for their residents.

For more information, visit to see the full schedule of activities.

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