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AOAM and surrounding communities. How we involved them at the Terramara Park

Saturday, 15 June, 2013 to Sunday, 15 June, 2014
Alessia pelillo, Elisa Fraulini, Ilaria Pulini
Number of Participants / Visitors / Audience: 
15th of June 2013 and 15th of June 2014, total 150 visitors

The Archaeological Park and Open Air Museum of Terramare is realised in the centre of Montale, a town of 3.800 inhabitants, 11 km from the city of Modena, under the Municipality of Castelnuovo Rangone. The Park developed under the double scientific direction of Modena Municipality (management direction also) and the maintenance management of Castelnuovo Municipality.
The involvement of the surrounding community has been one of the first goals of the Museum direction and more in general of the two municipalities. We have to confess, indeed, that it has been one of the most difficult results for us. If on one side all the local schools are yearly and completely involved in the activities of the Park (schools’ visits and special local schools visits: see after), it has not been the same for citizens of Montale and other possible local stakeholders, like for example business owners or shop keepers.

The experience and the knowledge obtained thanks to OpenArch partnership, pushed us to try with some particular project for the involvement of surrounding community. One of the occasion has been offered by the third meeting of the project OpenArch, organized by Modena Museum in April 2012, when we decided to involve the local senior and children citizens circle “La Palafitta” which locates some 20 meters from the archaeological area of our Park. The circle is active in the organization of children and families activities such as football school, summer camps, birthdays parties…and for senior in the organization of tourist tours, card games and competitions, dinner and dancing parties. The circle is also opened to everybody with a coffee bar and a little restaurant under reservation. If at the beginning we saw the circle as a “stranger”, we started little by little to consider them as a possible, interesting stakeholder able to involve segments of audience and to complete our offer to the visitors: we do not have in fact inside the museum any cafeteria and the possibility to “exploit” their bar was a bilateral opportunity. We started with the schools experiences: in winter time or in case of bad weather, the classes are invited to spend the break inside the circle. We decided together with the president of the circle about the possibility to let them use freely an ambient and the toilets. The outcome is that now classes often book for the lunch and the circle increased its costumers.
In the frame of OpenArch, we decided to organize with “La Palafitta” a special part of the workshop about metal production proposed to our partners in 2012. We spent in fact a part of the workshop inside the circle, when the participants involved in hands-on activities of smelting, have been invited to develop proposals creating the setting and the concept for a thorough presentation to the public. At the end of the workshop, the circle opened the restaurant and we spent the dinner and the entire evening there, with the possibility to use a private room especially for us.

In 2013 and 2014, thanks to the relationship developed in particular with the seniors associations of Montale town, we have been able to organize a special event aimed to involve local visitors in particular (even if not only them). “Nei panni degli antenati” (In the shoes of our forefathers) has been organized for two years in occasion of a special local feast of the town, organized by an association of senior citizens (Parco Grizzaga Associazione), dedicated to the ancient crafts. The terramara Park offered free visits for the particpants to the feast and the possibility to have a picture (made by a professional photographer of Montale town) dressed with reconstructed bronze age clothes that we realized for living history activities. The results are visible in the following pictures.


Workshop during the meeting of OpenArch 2012...
Workshop during the meeting of OpenArch 2012...
Group of children dressed like the...
Family in forefathers clothes during the...
Family in forefathers clothes during the...
Dressing up visitors