One hundred years from now, when St. Tammany Parish Citizens open the COVID-19 Time Capsule in the Slidell Museum, they will discover memorabilia and memories of the time that the citizens of today would rather forget, all focused on telling the stories of the emotional impact of the pandemic shutdowns. The time capsule will be sealed on Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2:30 pm at the Slidell Museum, 2020 First Street in Olde Towne Slidell.
The public is invited to join St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper and Slidell Mayor Greg Cromer for the time capsule dedication. Attendees may bring letters to be added to the historic collection, which will include memos penned by elected officials, audio histories captured by St. Tammany Parish Public Library, letters from students of Pope John Paul High School, a myriad of publications featuring stories about the pandemic and its impact, and the artists’ exhibition book documenting the “Reinvention: Creatives Pivot in the Pandemic” exhibition held in August of 2021 in the Slidell Cultural Center at City Hall.
“While history books may capture the physical impact of the pandemic, it has been important to the ‘Reinvention’ artists, and others who have contributed to the time capsule, that the challenges and triumphs be shared as well,” said Kim Bergeron, curator of the art exhibition and event. “This time capsule will contain the good, the bad and the ugly, including showing the ways communities came together, how the internet became a vital lifeline to connectivity, and even how issues such as face masks and school and business shutdowns sparked controversies. These are all parts of our stories.”
The Reinvention exhibition and time capsule project has been presented by Artists & Causes arts advocacy organization and hosted by the City of Slidell. It was supported in part by a grant from the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation, and the time capsule was funded by St. Tammany Parish Commission on Cultural Affairs. Additional support for the event was provided by the Northshore Media Group (Edge of the Lake magazine, The Highway Radio and The Lake Radio,) Slidell Magazine, Northshore Cultural Economy Coalition and The Northshore Collaborative.