BRIDGTON — The Rufus Porter Museum has changed its name to the Rufus Porter Museum of Art and Ingenuity. This update reflects the museum’s new mission to celebrate the life, times and legacy of Rufus Porter through the preservation and promotion of creativity and invention.

Karla Leandri Rider, museum executive director, explained that while Rufus Porter is, and always will be, the backbone of the museum, the staff and board of trustees felt that the stories they tell reflect not just the man but also his legacy. “The museum is not just about Rufus Porter and the 19th century. We also provide educational opportunities and highlight modern achievements in art and science. Our long-term vision is to become Bridgton’s cultural hub, inspired by Porter’s remarkable creativity.”

The decision to expand upon the name was made before the world pandemic. The name officially launches on the museum’s opening day, July 8, with a new sign, website and updated logo. “I feel that now is the perfect time to officially adopt it. I hope people will view our new name and mission as some positivity in a world full of uncertainty,” said Leandri Rider.

The museum has been monitoring state and federal regulations to prepare for their opening. They have included the following changes to ensure visitors, volunteers and staff stay safe: No more than five visitors will be allowed in the museum at one time; visitors will be required to wear face masks and sanitize their hands before entering; and self-guided tours will follow one-way traffic flow through the museum.

The museum will be open from noon to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Hours and days may change as more information becomes available. Check the museum’s website for more information about the 2020 events.

Founded in 2005, the Rufus Porter Museum of Art and Ingenuity,121 Main St., celebrates the life, times and legacy of Rufus Porter, (1792-1884) artist, musician, teacher, inventor and founder of Scientific American magazine, through the preservation and promotion of creativity and invention. For  more information, call 207-647-2828, email [email protected] or visit

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