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The Enthusiasts: The guardian of the Air Guard Museum
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Ray Peterson stands in front of the Museum's A-12 Blackbird. Peterson says the museum's A-12, also called Article 128, could fly at more than 3-1/2 times the speed of sound. The Minnesota Air National Guard did not operate the A-12. (MPR Photo/Bill Catlin)

St. Paul, Minn. — Officials at a small Twin Cities museum hope to re-open in August, after the events of Sept. 11, 2001, forced them to close. After the terrorist attacks on that day, the Minnesota Air Guard Museum had to return its hangars and exhibition space, located at the Twin Cities International Airport, to the Air Force. In June 2002, the space was returned to the museum. But since most of the exhibits were in storage, museum workers have been using the past year to dust things off and restore the exhibits. The museum is also working on a redesign of the facility.

This edition of The Enthusiasts features volunteer Ray Peterson, who has devoted thousands of hours to the museum over nearly 20 years. The museum's displays feature the Minnesota Air National Guard's history, aircraft, and a rare Blackbird spy plane.

Listen to Ray Peterson's comments by clicking the audio link in the right column.

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