The Sanibel Historical Museum and Village hosted more than 7,000 visitors so far this season and hopes to welcome more as it begins its summer hour schedule.
This season's total represents an increase of more than 1,400 people over the same period last year. The total also includes groups taking special tours of the village.
"We are very pleased that due to all of our marketing efforts, our new audio system and all of the work our board of directors has done over the last few years, our attendance has surpassed 7,000 people the earliest in the history of the museum," said president Alex Werner.
Historical Museum & Village docents Gail Garlinghouse (seated) and Barbara Broadhurst welcomed visitors to the Rutland House
That total does not include members; people coming to the museum with library passes; and children under 18, who are admitted for free.
Museum manager Emilie Alfino said she looks forward to many more visitors over the next 14 weeks when the museum is open half-days.
"Our hours change to 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday," Alfino said. "We hope that gives everyone plenty of time to visit us and learn about Sanibel's history in our beautiful, relaxing setting."
New officers were elected at last week's board meeting. Re-elected to one-year terms were president Alex Werner, treasurer Bill Bachman, and secretary Jan Halliday. Elected for the first time was vice president Dorothy Donaldson. The rest of the board members are Nancy McNeill, Gayle Pence, Deborah Staley, Paula Newton, manager of the gift shop, and Karl Rodman.
The Museum & Village is located at 950 Dunlop Road, next to BIG ARTS. Adult admission is $5; those under age 18 are free. Single memberships are $25, family memberships are $50, and other levels are available. Special tours can be arranged by calling 472-8871.