USC Pacific Asia Museum in Pasadena set to reopen after yearlong pandemic closure

PASADENA, Calif. (KABC) -- After being closed for more than a year because of the pandemic, the USC Pacific Asia Museum is preparing to reopen this month and just in time for a major milestone.

"The museum has been here for 50 years. We're celebrating our 50th anniversary," said Rebecca Hall, the PAM's curator. The museum is slated to open its doors during Memorial Day weekend, on May 29.

"The goal is to bring Asian American and Pacific Islander history, art and culture to people who know about it and don't know about it so that we can also bring people together," museum's director Bethany Montagano told Eyewitness News.

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The reopening comes during Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and during a time when hate crimes against the Asian community are peaking across the country.

"As a museum we have a role and also a responsibility to counter that, to make sure that we're confronting that injustice," said Montagano.

"I think just having people back in our galleries is going to be really exciting," Hall said. "Museums come to life when people come to see what's inside of them. Things are more beautiful when people can see them."

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