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Museum scares up learning fun: Saturday event combines history lesson, Halloween theme

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BAILEY — The Country Doctor Museum is offering a look at the morbid side of medicine for the Halloween season.

Set for 6-8:30 p.m. Saturday, Twilight at the Museum pulls back the curtain on the gruesome aspects of archaic healing. And as darkness begins to fall, the Plague Doctors will roam the museum grounds.

The family-friendly evening includes a tour, demonstrations and activities. Exhibits include live leeches in a jar, a collection of glass eyeballs, an actual human skull, an iron lung and more.

Museum Director Annie Anderson said the museum has a collection of oddities that lend themselves to Halloween.

“We want to educate people, but we also don’t want to take ourselves too seriously,” Anderson said. “We’re not competing with haunted houses, we’re still an educational organization.”

The staff have been discussing an event like Twilight at the Museum for a while now and it finally fell into place, Anderson said.

The evening of creepy fun includes demonstrations of Civil War-era surgery and embalming techniques. A cadaver lab photo booth will allow families to take a unique picture for their photo albums and a fortune teller will be on hand.

While it’s fun and slightly creepy, it’s all about history. An Advanced Placement U.S. history class from Southern Nash High School will be helping out Saturday.

“When you have such a small staff, you need volunteers for an event like this,” Anderson said.

A barbecue food truck will be on site during the event and Bonanza Grill in downtown Bailey will be open late, Anderson said.

Admission for Twilight at the Museum isl $4 for ages 5 and older. The admission fee goes toward the Country Doctor Museum’s educational event costs.

The museum is located at 7089 Peele Road. There is ample parking near the visitors center, gift shop and Carriage House.

Founded in 1967, the Country Doctor Museum is the oldest museum in the United States dedicated to the history of America’s rural health care.

The gift shop offers plant medicine books and local history books alongside other items, including a local author’s book spotlighting the Country Doctor Museum’s history published this year.

For more information, visit www.countrydoctormuseum.org.

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