Liberace Fans to Protest the Closing of the Museum

Fans of the Liberace Museum are outraged at the closing of the Museum (see our post below).  According to our pal, Johnny Katz at the Las Vegas Sun, a protest is planned for Wednesday morning at 11:30 am in front of the museum.

Jeffrey White, the event organizer, is calling for the ouster of Liberace Foundation Chairman, Jeffrey Koep and Foundation President Jack Rappaport.  Rappaport's continuing role is unknown but he thinks he may be asked to handle the choosing of items for a possible national tour.  He is also trying to find a new home for the Museum on the Strip.

According to Katz, Koep said meager visitation numbers at the museum (from a high of 450,000 at its peak to around 30,000 last year) and an absence of revenue from businesses in the strip-mall plaza owned by the foundation were the reasons the distinctly Las Vegas attraction is closing.

Koep said the museum had for years been financially sustained by the endowment fund set up to award scholarships, and it had reached the point where the museum had to close to preserve that fund, he said. The Liberace Foundation had once awarded $500,000 annually to gifted students; last year that number fell to $65,000.

The organized outcry likely won't be a massive effort. A turnout of between 75 and 100 is expected. But White, quoting from legendary cultural anthropologist Margaret Mead, said the group would not be deterred:

"A small group of thoughtful people can change the world. Indeed it's the only thing that ever has."

For more on the Museum prospects and a film on the life of Lee: