T he Slate Valley Museum has organized its first quarry tour in four years next Saturday, July 20.
The event will be a celebration of the new exhibit “Preserving a Heritage, Building a Community: the Carpatho-Rusyn People of the Slate Valley.”
During the fully guided tour of the Labas Quarry, with Slovakian descendent Michael Labas, participants will learn about the family’s experiences as immigrants in the quarrying industry.
“How did the family rise from working in the pits to becoming quarry owners? Experience this family owned and operated quarry firsthand with this special opportunity not to be missed,” museum officials said.
Those who attend will meet at the museum at 9 a.m. for a brief tour of its newest exhibit before caravanning to the Labas Quarry. Throughout the exhibit, visitors will hear the voice of Michael Labas’ father, Michael “Pinkie” Labas, as he talks about his experiences growing up, the importance of religion to his community and the slate industry that attracted his family to the Slate Valley.
Reservations are required, and officials strongly recommend participants plan for the weather and wear clothing appropriate for hiking. Boots are recommended, and open-toed shoes are not allowed.
Although the tour will be short and in the morning, it is also recommended that participants bring water, sunscreen and bug repellent. Those with mobility issues will be able to see some of the quarry from their car, but walks into the quarry will be on unpaved, dirt roads used for heavy lifting equipment, so please plan accordingly. In the chance of inclement weather, participants will be notified of cancellation 24 hours before the event and the museum will give refunds to those who have paid.
Interested parties can call the museum at 518-642-1417, sign-up on SVM’s website (www.slatevalleymuseum.org), or e-mail the museum at [email protected] to make a reservation. Cost is $10 per person for non-members and $5 per person for members of the Slate Valley Museum.