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Visitor and membership numbers up at Crocker, but so are operating costs

(Edward Ortiz, The Sacramento Bee) The Crocker Art Museum roughly doubled its number of visitors and admissions revenue in the first year since opening a $122 million expansion last October.

Yet the museum remains $10 million short of paying that bill, a prospect that worries other arts organizations that are competing to raise funds in a tight economy.

The Crocker had 300,000 visitors walk through its doors in the last year, 18,201 of them on opening day, said Lial Jones executive director of the Crocker.

Previously the highest yearly visitor tally at the 126-year-old was 170,000 visitors.

“The profile of the museum is higher and we’re doing a lot more programming,” Jones said. “The intention of the building was to better serve the community. … Before, we had no dedicated programming space.”