Jessica Mathews /

A fundraising event aimed at preserving an iconic pipe organ at the Historic Hartland Music Hall has been deemed an “overwhelming success”.

The Cromaine District Library and the Hartland Messiah Chorus hosted the recent fundraiser aimed at preserving and maintaining the iconic Kilgen Pipe Organ located at the Music Hall.

The event, initially scheduled for March 21st, had to be rescheduled due to inclement weather and took place on May 3rd – marking a pivotal moment in the restoration journey of this cultural treasure.

Guests enjoyed a welcome by event sponsor and longtime caretaker of the Hall, Don Thompson, a video history of the Music Hall and Organ, followed by a delightful concert performed on the Kilgen Organ by organist, Rick Helderop.

Community Engagement Manager of the Cromaine District Library Liz Welch said “Friday’s Kilgen Organ Fundraiser was a great evening filled with local history, community connection, and beautiful music. Thank you to all who attended and contributed to the care and maintenance of this historic gem! We are proud to be part of a community that is not only rich in history but also passionate about the preservation of that history. Thank you for your generosity!”

Cromaine District Library Director Sarah Neidert said “I’d like to thank our talented and dedicated Adult Librarians, Erik Nilsen and Rachel Stock, for creating a visual history of our Kilgen organ. If you weren’t able to attend the fundraiser, you’ll enjoy watching this video detailing the story of how and where Kilgen pipe organs are made, and how one came to be in our Historic Hartland Music Hall!”

Those who missed the fundraiser but would still like the opportunity to contribute to the maintenance of the pipe organ, can visit the below provided link to make a secure donation of any amount.

With Phase 2 fully funded, restoration work is set to commence in the coming fall, bringing the community one step closer to ensuring the Kilgen Pipe Organ remains a functioning instrument that can continue to be played for the next 100 years. The Cromaine District Library and the Hartland Messiah Chorus say they remain committed to “preserving this historical treasure and are immensely grateful for the community's continued support”.

Photo: Organizers of Friday’s event stand with the Kilgen Organ at the Hartland Music Hall.

Left to Right, Front Row: Don Thompson, Event Sponsor and longtime Caretaker of the Hartland Music Hall, Liz Welch, Community Engagement Manager of Cromaine Library, and Sarah Neidert, Director of Cromaine Library. Left to Right, Back Row: Rick Helderop, Master of Music in Organ Performance and organist for the Hartland Messiah Chorus, and Carlton Davis, Business Manager of the Hartland Messiah Chorus.

The video can be viewed on the Library's Facebook page. That link is provided also provided.