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Historical Society Officers, Board Members Inducted
Historical society board
A new lineup was introduced at a special dinner meeting of the Riverbank Historical Society recently at Perkos Restaurant. From left, Board Members-at-Large Paulette Roberson, Judie Hardie, Mary Banda and Craig Ethier, 2018 President Kristin Platts, Vice President Cal Campbell, Secretary Marina Campbell and Treasurer Rich Holmer. The society was formed in the mid-1990s to help preserve the history of the Riverbank area of Stanislaus County. Ric McGinnis/The News

The Riverbank Historical Society gathered for its annual dinner earlier this month, introducing its Board of Directors and slate of officers for 2018.

With a patriotic theme, at-large board members include Paulette Roberson and Craig Ethier, both past presidents, Judie Hardie and Mary Banda. Treasurer Rich Holmer, board secretary Marina Campbell and vice president Cal Campbell continue to serve, while president Kristin Platts has been elected to serve in that office for 2018.

Ethier was president last year. His parents, Ruth and Henri (Hank) Ethier, were founding members of the society. His sister, Heidi, has also served as its president.

A sub-committee will be meeting soon to organize ongoing efforts to raise funds to build an annex building adjacent to the existing Historical Museum, which is at 3237 Santa Fe.

The City of Riverbank owns the museum building, which was built as a Carnegie Library in 1921, while the society maintains the collections and its volunteers staff the museum. The building has been listed on the National Registry of Historic Places since Feb. 3, 1997.

The city has purchased the property next door, but the society is tasked with raising the money to construct the building.

In addition to several major events over the past year, the Historical Society has prepared a preliminary design for the annex. Previous fundraising in the campaign included special movie showings at the IMAX Theatre at the Galaxy complex.

Officials have said they find it necessary to build an annex to be able to house all the photos, documents, pieces of equipment and other items it owns.

Some are currently in storage, with others housed in a warehouse, including the 1919 Model T Ford fire engine donated by the Riverbank Volunteer Firefighters, who originally purchased it.

Other large items include a long oak bench that was recovered from the fire in 2003 that destroyed the Santa Fe Railroad Depot, and a large safe from the original Riverbank Water Company.

Next up for the Historical Society is its yearly After-Mother’s Day Omelet Breakfast. Held every year on the Sunday following Mother’s Day in May, this event raises the money the society uses to operate the museum and maintain its contents.

Money raised at other events will go toward building the annex.

The current museum is open on Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 10 a.m. until noon, and Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. It is staffed by volunteers.