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Posted on Sat, Dec 31, 2011 : 9:40 a.m.

Should Chelsea include a visitor's center and historical museum in its future downtown plans?

By Lisa Allmendinger

The Chelsea Area Historical Society has floated the idea that Chelsea should have a visitor center that includes a historical museum.

It’s an idea that has been mentioned for a number of years by various elected and appointed officials.

George Till, a member of the historical society, recently approached the Chelsea City Council about the proposal, which he said could include the Chelsea Area Chamber of Commerce.

Chelsea Mayor Jason Lindauer said something similar to a visitor’s center — a place with public restroom facilities for downtown visitors, which could also include a permanent home for the historical society — has been brought up numerous times over the past 10 years.

In fact, take a look at this video that’s part of Chelsea’s future redevelopment plan.

Lindauer said there is something going on downtown almost every weekend, which brings many people to Chelsea. Although it wouldn't be a revenue producer for the city, finding a place for public restroom facilities, such as a visitor's center, is important for the downtown.

Additionally, the historical society would like to be a part of the city's future plans and land in a permanent place. Currently, the 100-member historical society is located in a rented home on Old US-12.

“In 1974, we were chartered,” Till told the City Council. “And we have been gathering and preserving Chelsea’s history since then.”

The group has had fundraisers selling calendars, conducts cemetery tours and helped to purchase historical markers for the Welfare Building and The Depot Building, Till said. Members also have given presentations to school children.

“A permanent home in a visitor’s center would enhance tourism goals,” he said, “And, it would be a good fit for the city.”

Lisa Allmendinger is a regional reporter for She can be reached at For more Chelsea stories, visit our Chelsea page.



Sun, Jan 1, 2012 : 2:34 p.m.

A visitors center would be nice if affordable. Chelsea is a great little town with tons to offer.