Rocket To the Moon

19 Aug

by Teen Troupe Reporter Taylor Babino      taylor

On Saturday, July 9, 2016, I volunteered for the Family Fun Day at the Museum of Gulf Coast which was themed NASA, astronauts and the solar system. While volunteering I got a chance to interview Jackie who brought her son to participate in all of the fun.  She told me that she loved how interactive the projects and crafts were and also how much her and her son learned about our solar system.  Her son said his favorite activity was being able to eat what the astronauts ate.  He was able to taste a freeze dried ice cream sandwich.



Jackie and her son enjoying the family fun day


Teen Troupe Volunteer, Loren, serving  freeze-dried ice cream sandwiches



Teen Troupe volunteer, Kendria, helping a family make a solar system



Guest busy with so many activities


Teen Troupe, volunteer, Jordyn selleing yummy snacks


Family Fun Day events at the Gulf Coast of Museum are given about every other month.  These events are for all ages to enjoy and have a different theme each time which keeps the guests wanting more.  My personal favorite is the annual Christmas Family Fun Day which has so many surprises.  We know you wouldn’t want to miss any of this fun so, you are welcome to join us at our next Family Fun Day on October 8th.  Hope to see you there!




8 Jul

by Taylor Babino, Teen Troupe Reporter

On Thursday, June 16, 2016, I had the pleasure of spending the day with the EnviroKids here at the Museum of Gulf Coast.  While they were busy learning about dinosaurs and fossils, I had an opportunity to speak to two of the EnviroKids. When speaking to Katelin (10) and Lyzeth (11), they told me that they were learning so many things about dinosaurs, fossils, and what Southeast Texas was like before human life.  They also said they had fun making their own fossil with plaster.


Katelin (10) and Lyzeth (11) enjoying their break with EnviroKids

The Museum of the Gulf Coast EnviroKids program is for students entering the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th grades.  This is truly a fun program that is hands on and you also get an opportunity to go on some pretty cool field trips like sailing, hiking and so many more. This is an awesome program that I would recommend because I too was an Envirokid at one time.  Please contact Stephanie Harren (Education Coordinator) for more information about signing up for next year’s program.  Hope to see you there!!!

EnviroKids listening to Stephanie Harren ( Education Coordinator) talkin about fossils and dinosaurs
22 Jan

My Talk with Avril Falgout

by Taylor Babino (Teen Troupe Volunteer)taylorandAvril

(photo by Taylor Babino)

On Saturday, January 16, 2016 I got a chance to sit down and candidly talk to up- and- coming 18 year old teen artist, Avril Falgout, about her Janis Joplin exhibit that is displayed at the Museum of Gulf Coast and her unique artwork.

My first question to Avril was, “What made you start doing artwork? “ Avril stated, that she was self-taught at a young age and that she would go to kid’s art camps where she really enjoyed working with Paper Mache (Paper Mache- is a composite material consisting of paper pieces or pulp, sometimes reinforced with textiles, bound with an adhesive, such as glue, starch or wallpaper paste).  She said she has worked with 2D art work (paintings) but her favorite is working with the 3D art work (sculptures).

I then asked “What made you base your exhibit on Janis Joplin?” Avril stated “I am rock and roll obsessed.  I actually know Sarah Bellian (Curator/Archivist) from other art shows and I asked her if I could do a sculpture of Janis Joplin and she was right on board from the start”.

I questioned Avril about what is her favorite artwork in her exhibit and she stated “literally all are my favorites”. I ended my interview with her by asking is she had any advice to give any aspiring artist and her response was “just do it”.

I really enjoyed interviewing Avril Falgout with her very unique ability to capture her artwork with life size paper mache sculptures. With such rare and raw talent she has been able to capture 3D art at its finest, not only is her art life size it is also life like that mesmerizes the viewer with such detail.

Her Janis Joplin sculpture is a must see on your list when visiting the Museum of the Gulf Coast, which will be on display during  Mardi Gras season that ends on Sunday, February 7, 2016.


Teen Troupe Spotlight

12 Jan

Taylor Babino                   taylor

Taylor Babino, is a 8th Grader who has been actively involved with Teen Troupe for 3 years.  Taylor ambition is to attend California State University (Cal State) where she will pursue a career in Studio Art (professional photographer).  She loves history, nature and just an all-around people person.

Do you know someone would love to volunteer at the museum, meet new people, go on trips, learn new things, and have tons of fun?   Volunteering here at the Museum may just be the place for them!

Bring a friend to the next meeting (January 30th) to see if they might like to begin volunteering here. AND you might get a chance to win a gift card to a local restaurant.  How cool is that?

Wild About Texas

18 Jun

We have wrapped up week one of EnviroKids Summer Camp A.  What a week it was!  Sailing, hiking, learning about snakes and other reptiles.  What could be more fun than having a snake around your neck.

5365_10151492545778927_1655048350_nThank you Village Creek State Park for a wonderful nature hike.  We got to see some really cool stuff including a five lined skink, anoele, leaf cutter ants, and deer.

1003660_10151494146718927_1792816304_nSailing is a highlight of camp.  Thank you Bill and Carolyn Worsham for your continued contribution to EnviroKids every year

20130613_105842        DSC04422  Mr. Clint the Snake Guy from Texas Snakes and more brought an exciting element to camp.  We got to see a Blue Tongued Skink, Box Turtle and several different types of snakes.

Between a Rock and Hard Place

17 Apr


The teen troup group has wrapped up the volunteer season with a trip to Lamar University.  We had a fantasitc time learning leadership skill and learning to work as a team.  The group learned the importance of working together to put a tent.  It becomes even harder when some are blind folded and others can’t touch the tent but only give directionsDSC04176DSC04180DSC04182

Rock climbing presents its own challenges.  But the teens conquered their own fears and climbed like champs.


The Museum of the Gulf Coast offers a special membership club for youth in grades 6 – 11. Teen Troupe is designed to introduce young people to the wonder and importance of the museum world. Students who join will have opportunities to participate in museum trainings  learn leadership skills; get a behind the scenes look at museum operations; volunteer for education programs; receive newsletters and special event invitations; go on reward trips; and interact with other teens and make new friends.

Wild About Texas

16 Apr

group photoThe Museum of the Gulf Coast is excited to offer for the 11th year, Envirokids summer camp. EnviroKids is an exciting summer camp at the Museum of the Gulf Coast. It is designed for students in grades 2 – 5 who would like to learn about the environment and experience fun outdoor activities through field trips, guest presenters, hands-on activities, and arts and crafts. EnviroKids is FREE for students in Port Arthur ISD and to members of the Port Arthur Historical Society. All others must pay a $50 registration fee.

There will be two camps offered in 2013

Camp A: June10 – June 21 – This camp is designed for 2nd and 3rd graders
Camp B: June 24– July 5 – This camp is designed for 4th and 5th graders

The camps will take place Monday-Friday, 9:00 am – 12:30 p.m.

Lunch will be provided daily at the museum.
The Museum of the Gulf Coast is owned and operated by the Port Arthur Historical Society in partnership with Lamar State College – Port Arthur and the City of Port Arthur. It is located at 700 Procter Street in downtown Port Arthur and is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. For more information about the Museum please visit or call 409.982.7000

Exquisite Miniatures

28 Mar


 giraffe                                             Exquisite Miniatures: Nature Paintings by Wes and Rachelle Seigrest

 April 7 – June 2, 2013

 Port Arthur, TX– The Port Arthur Historical Society is proud to announce the opening of a new temporary exhibition, Exquisite Miniatures,  at the Museum of the Gulf Coast featuring the miniature paintings of Wes and Rachelle Seigrest. Wes and Rachelle Siegrist are an American husband and wife team who mesmerize viewers with miniature paintings so exquisitely crafted that they are often mistaken for tiny photographs.  Their tiny treasures, as collectors often refer to them, typically measure less than 9 square inches and appear even more detailed when viewed under magnification!  A hallmark of their work is their ability to convey the feeling of a larger canvass or the essence of the natural world in miniature. 

 “The detail of the paintings in this exhibit is so intricate, that we decided to make magnifying glasses available for use in the gallery,” says curator Ami Kamara, “Some of the images are barely larger than the size of a postage stamp!”

 Wes and Rachelle Siegrist are members of the Miniature Artists of America, the Miniature Art  Society of Florida, the Miniature Painters, Sculptors & Gravers Society of Washington, D.C., the Cider Painters of America, and the Hilliard Society of England.  They are the authors of the world’s first standard definition of miniature art adopted by the Association of  Miniaturist Artists.  Small wonder, therefore, that the Siegrists have been referred to as “World Ambassadors for Miniature Art.” 

 EXQUISITE MINIATURES consists of fifty signature paintings including landscapes, portraits, still lifes, wildlife, and other subjects by Wes and Rachelle Siegrist.  The exhibition is accompanied by a book of the same title about Wes and  Rachelle Siegrist and their art, with an introduction by David  J. Wagner. In addition to offering the book for sale, the artists are offering many of the tiny works of art for sale during the length of the exhibition.

 The Museum of the Gulf Coast invites the public to a FREE opening reception for Exquisite Miniatures on Sunday, April 7, 2013 from 2 – 4pm.

The Museum of the Gulf Coast is owned and operated by the Port Arthur Historical Society in partnership with Lamar State College – Port Arthur and the City of Port Arthur. It is located at 700 Procter Street in downtown Port Arthur. The Museum is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $4 for adults, $3 for seniors, and $2 for children. The Museum offers a group tour rate of $2 per person for any group of ten or more people with advance notice. School tours are always FREE. For more information or to schedule a tour please call 409.982.7000 or visit

Image credit: The Awkward Maneuver by Wes Seigrest

America’s Music Family Fun Day

17 Jan


January 26, 2013 10am-2pm

Port Arthur, TX – Join the Museum of the Gulf Coast for a FREE day of family fun as we ring in the New Year by celebrating America’s Music.

Young and old are invited to enjoy a variety of family friendly activities including:

  •  Musical arts and crafts including making your own instrument
  •  Science discoveries about how we hear and how to make music
  • Games and activities including music and movement, musical instrument discovery and rock star bracelet dig
  •  Screening of the movie “Happy Feet” at 12:00 p.m.

raysimienThere will also have be live performance by Young Audiences presenter, Ray Simien at 11:00 AM. Local musician and songwriter Ray Simien puts history in a lively and fun context. “Jammin’ Through the Decades, “is music that features some of our famous local artists including Harry James, The Big Bopper, Janis Joplin, Tracy Byrd, and others.

The Museum of the Gulf Coast is owned and operated by the Port Arthur Historical Society in partnership with Lamar State College – Port Arthur and the City of Port Arthur. It is located at 700 Procter Street in downtown Port Arthur and is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. For more information about the Museum please visit or call 409.982.7000

Sleigh Bells Ring!

27 Nov

Sleigh Bells Ring!



December 8, 2012
10:00 3:00 p.m.


 Port Arthur, TX – Hearken back to holidays of old with homemade ornaments, jingle bells and carriage rides. The Museum of the Gulf Coast invites young and old to Sleigh Bells Ring! a Family Fun Day on Saturday, December 8 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This holiday event will feature a variety of family friendly activities including:

  • horse-drawn carriage rides to the newly renovated Pompeiian Villa historic home where visitors can view the home’s extensive Santa Claus collection, enjoy hot chocolate in the courtyard, and take family photos in front of the elaborate Christmas tree (*read more about the Villa below).
  • holiday crafts and hands-on activities including homemade ornaments, a scavenger hunt, Victorian dress-up, a Candy Cane dig, and “How Does Santa get down the Chimney?” experiment
  • film screenings of The Polar Express and The Nightmare Before Christmas

 The cost is FREE for children ages 10 and under and $3 for all others.

The Museum of the Gulf Coast is owned and operated by the Port Arthur Historical Society in partnership with Lamar State College – Port Arthur and the City of Port Arthur. It is located at 700 Procter Street in downtown Port Arthur and is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. For more information about the Museum please visit or call 409.982.7000.




 More About the Pompeiian Villa

Located at 1953 Lakeshore Drive in Port Arthur, the Pompeiian Villa is beautifully decorated for Christmas with an elaborate tree and all of the trimmings including a unique 500 piece Santa Claus collection. The Villa parlor is the perfect place to take a family portrait for the holidays so visitors are encouraged to bring their cameras.

Commissioned in 1900 by “Barbed Wire King” Isaac Ellwood, the Pompeiian Villa is a 10-room cottage built in a traditional Roman layout centered around a peristyle. Originally built as a winter home, the Villa features a three-sided courtyard, unique appointments and exquisite furnishings such as a Louis XVI parlor set and an art nouveau Baccarat crystal chandelier. Ellwood soon sold the home to the president of the Diamond Match Company, St. Louis tycoon James Hopkins. But when Hopkins’ wife refused to live in the untamed frontier that was southeast Texas, he traded the Villa to Port Arthur entrepreneur George M. Craig for $10,000 worth of Texas Company stock. The stock represented 10 percent of the new company’s total capitalization, but today it would trade in excess of hundreds of millions of dollars. The Craig family lived in the Villa for 43 years before selling it to Captain Arne Pederson who occupied the house for the next 19 years.

The home stood vacant for five years before it was rescued from demolition by the Port Arthur Historical Society in 1965. After years of renovation and repair, the home opened to the public in the early 1970s. It is now on the National Registry of Historical Places and hosts a Texas State Historical Medallion and Marker. The Villa has been recently renovated including new exterior paint to bring out the beautiful and unique “pink” color that distinguishes it from any other historic home.