Who’s Your Competition? (from HHT Session)

Lewis Latimer House

Presenters Susan Schear of Artisin and Elizabeth Wagner of JC Geever said that your competitors aren’t who you think they are—they’re not the other historic houses or local museums, since missions don’t overlap that much.

Rather, the competition is other entertainment venues. For example, competition for the Latimer House is the US Open. Not only are the roads jammed, but airplanes are rerouted overhead so Latimer House can’t hold outdoor programs–too noisy.

Also, NYC museums aren’t necessarily competition for local museums. People staying in Queens hotels, for example, are there for family events and aren’t interested in going to Manhattan. They may be more interested in local museums.

Other things that affect attendance include disease and weather. The Queens County Farm Museum lost a lot of its student groups this fall to the H1N1 virus. Historic Richmond Town on Staten Island loses student groups whenever it rains, since the program requires students to walk from house to house and teachers don’t want those kids getting wet.

Historic Richmond Town

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