After a tumultuous few months, the Detroit Children's Museum closed this Thursday until further notice, the Detroit News reported.
Federal funding has been keeping the museum open since September when its operator, the Detroit Science Center, ran out of money, but the federal dollars dried up last month.
A Thursday evening post on the Children's Museum's Facebook page shared the news with the museum's fans and visitors:
Hello everyone. I want to thank all of our visitors and supporters over the last year and a half and for those that supported the Children's Museum before the DSC took over operating the building. Unfortunately, due to the continued financial problems at the Detroit Science Center the DCM will be closed until further notice. It is with deep regret that I must tell you this. Thank you to everyone for making this past year and a half a truly remarkable. Sincerely, Julie Johnson Director of the DCM
The museum, which was just the third children's museum in the country when it opened in 1917, has been run by the Detroit Science Center since 2010. The DSC took control of the museum after Detroit Public Schools, the original manager, closed it in August 2009.
The museum reopened in June 2010 with revamped exhibits, but just barely a year later the DSC closed its own doors. What was supposed to be a temporary two-week closure in September became permanent.
The DSC is looking for $5 million in emergency funds to keep the museums open for another year and balance its budget, according to the Free Press.
Chairman of the DSC board, Francois Castaing, resigned this Thursday as well, saying the past six months had been heartbreaking, Crain's reported. DSC CEO and President Kevin Prihod resigned in August.
A little bit of hope remains, however. A Friday morning post on the Children's Museum's Facebook page alludes to "new developments" forthcoming, which hopefully means good news for the beloved institution.
Fans and community members took to Twitter to express their sorrow and disappointment over the museum's closing: