GEM has a new Director


Erik Gantt

Since the end of July, Sarah Rytting has been serving as Co-director of the Grand Encampment Museum (GEM). Helping usher her in to the Director position is her aunt, Anne Pantle, also serving as Co-director.

Rytting has a degree in rangeland ecology, and a strong curiosity to explore new things. Working at the museum "I get to learn a lot about the history, and it's definitely new things every day," said Rytting.

It has been an unanticipated journey for Rytting to end up at GEM. She worked in her field of study for the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) out of their Springfield, Colo., field office for five years. She then decided that it was time to be closer to home and family, but a job in her field was not easy to come by. So, to fill the time between the NRCS and GEM she sold insurance.

Rytting grew up in Cheyenne and spent much of her summers helping Pantle on her property between Encampment and Walden. Rytting is happy to be back in the area that was so important to her childhood.

Rytting has had to jump in to directing the museum with both feet since this season is an extended one for GEM. Along with normal daily activities at GEM, the Slash Ridge fire lookout tower is currently being rehabilitated.

Beginning in September GEM will host the traveling Smithsonian Institution exhibit "Journey Stories," which is already in preparation.

"It is essentially how folks ended up getting to where they are today, be it Native Americans, new American citizens, Oregon Trail, Railroads, everything like that," said Rytting.

The grand opening of "Journey Stories," will be from 5 to 7 p.m. on Sept. 27 and the exhibit will run until Dec. 15.


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