Historic airplane at Grand Rapids Public Museum temporarily taken down

Posted at 8:36 AM, May 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-16 08:36:52-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — It was a historic day a the Grand Rapids Public Museum on Sunday. An airplane on display for almost 20 years was taken down to make room for new construction.

The Driggs Skylark Biplane was donated by Jay Van Andel 17 years ago and has been hanging above the Galleria at the museum ever since. On Sunday, it was taken down to make room for a new staircase being built this summer. The staircase will be used by the museum's school that includes two sixth grade classes. The process was tedious, making sure not to damage the artifact that'll go back up in a few months.

"This is exciting for us, because it is a part of the museum," said President of Marketing and Public Relations Kate Moore. "The fact that we are changing up a little bit of what we've been doing for the past 20 years in collaboration with Grand Rapids Public School. For us to temporarily move something that's been hanging here for nearly 20 years in order to make way for school kids to be able to come in and utilize the museum is exciting."

The group hanging the airplane 17 years ago was also the group taking it down on Sunday. The plane will be back in its place above the Galleria in September.