What We Do: Hands on Heritage2018-08-11T15:19:25+00:00

What We Do

Hands on Heritage is a unique, woman-owned company that specializes in consulting and public relations for heritage organizations and cultural resource management firms. We specialize in projects that connect communities and conserve cultural legacies. We provide project mitigation solutions with an emphasis on interpretation and education. We offer a range of professional public relation services, from communication strategies to convergent media solutions. With a combined background in education, archaeology, military, history, sports management, and communications, Hands on Heritage works diligently to promote our clients as successful, honest, important, exciting and relevant.

We provide management support and services to complete projects within budget and on time. Our abilities include planning, coordinating, and implementing projects, coordinating activities, collaborating with team members, developing measurable goals and objectives, and monitoring progress from inception to opening day. Contact us for a free consultation and quote today.

Hands on Heritage with Robin Van Auken

Lance Van Auken gives Torii Hunter a tour of the Hall of Excellence and Former Astronaut Dr. Story Musgrave’s exhibit at World of Little League Museum. 

Our Services

Museum Projects
Are you planning a museum project? Lance is a proficient and precise project manager. His expertise is in shepherding the later phases of the museum design process, which includes helping clients develop and select museum content, overseeing exhibit design, shop fabrication, graphic production and on-site installation. Working with the detailing team allows him to keep projects on schedule and budget. Robin’s background in museum education enhances her understanding of clients’ needs. She has strong technical writing and spatial conceptualization skills.

Heritage Projects
All organizations have a history, however not all have a heritage. Conserve and protect it, endorse and promote it, and earn revenue from it with a project designed for your association. From creating an archive, to conducting oral histories, to designing a corporate history brochure, or a World Wide Web-based historical exhibit, we can assist in documenting the past and influence the future.

Research & records
Are you looking for proficient assistance in locating important historical records? Maybe you’re interested in locating photographs, newspaper articles, documents, advertisements, books, or other memorabilia related to your organization’s past? Perhaps you would like to find out more about your company’s founder, its responsibility during war and depression, or your original competitors. Using resources ranging from the Library of Congress and National Archives, to your local courthouse, newspaper and historical society, we can investigate for you.

Exhibits are not just limited to museums – exhibits and interpretive panels have cropped up everywhere, from parks to roadways to grocery stores and even company headquarters. Exhibits are a wonderful venue for educating, enlightening and entertaining guests. Consider adding a three-dimensional and an Internet-based exhibit that informs the world about your organization

Interpretive Panels
Successful interpretive panels combine imaginative text and colorful visuals to tell a story. People decide within seconds if they will stop and read a sign, so it must be attractive and accessible at a glance. We design signs for museums, nature trails, heritage parks and businesses. As graphic design specialists, we know exactly what the sign manufacturer needs, and can help you design and develop a long-lasting, eye-catching interpretive panel.

Public Relations
With a combined background in education, archaeology, history, sports management, military and communications, Hands on Heritage works diligently to promote our clients as successful, honest, important, exciting and relevant. We accomplish this by analyzing your organization, finding the positive messages and translating those messages into positive media stories. When the news is bad, Hands on Heritage can formulate the best response and mitigate the damage.

Communications Package
Are you in need of a new website that’s connected to your social media accounts? How about a video that explains your business? We are convergent media experts, and our clients rave about our “intuitive” web development skills and communications package. In addition to our communication services, we have experience in developing print books, eBooks, websites, mobile sites, photo scrapbooks, video scrapbooks, multimedia projects, brochures, pamphlets, and manuals. We are “digital archaeologists” and enjoy working with and preserving old photographs.

Interpretive panel at Muncy Heritage Park and Nature Trail

Corporate Histories & Management Memoirs
Successful companies often require brief corporate histories for in-house use; some corporations desire an in-depth book for trade distribution. Perhaps you require a specialist to chronicle and illustrate your company’s story for publication. We provide guidance for new or existing book projects needing supplementary or outside help. If your company leader has a forceful story or captivating executive viewpoint to contribute, then consider sharing the secret of their success in a memoir. We are available to write, co-author, or ghostwrite a book or article on any topic.

Oral History Programs
An oral history program helps others profit from the well-deserved wisdom of the people who built your community, your business, or association. Documents tell merely a piece of any organization’s tale. With more than 20 years’ experience in journalism, we have conducted taped interviews with more than 500 individuals, including executives, media celebrities, officials, policymakers, industrialists, support staff and individuals.

Archaeology/Cultural Resource Management
Cultural Resource Management phases are conducted in stages referred to as I, II and III. Hands on Heritage’s archaeologists assists its clients with small Phase I and II investigations, and if Phase III is needed, help you identify the best impact mitigation plan. Our archaeological fieldwork serves two purposes: we help the client move forward with site identification, leading to protection or mitigation, and we provide a hands-on learning opportunity to students and avocational archaeologists.

Landmark Planning
Perhaps there is an important anniversary impending, a landmark for your municipality or organization? Maybe your town is celebrating its centennial or its bicentennial? These events offer the occasion to unify past, present and future into a significant commemoration. If you would like assistance with this event, we can offer as much – or as little – aid as you require for designing events, publications, promotion and memorabilia.

Research in the Berkshires

Conducting historic research at a Berkshire cemetery.