Historic Molly Brown house in Hannibal is barely staying afloat

The Molly Brown House in Hannibal was built in the mid 1800s. And the City of Hannibal has owned the historic house since 2007.

But for the past two years, the operating budget of the house has ended in the red.

Now there's talk on what the Hannibal Convention and Visitors bureau is facing and what it can do to put the budget back into the black.

The house is not located right in the heart of the Hannibal Historic District, but the old Molly Brown House does have plenty of it's own history behind it.

The director of the Hannibal Convention and Visitors Bureau said she thinks the heat this summer had an effect on attendance.

"The heat of course, that was a factor and then of course the air conditioning went out so there are just some things you cannot control," Gail Bryant, executive director of the Hannibal Convention and Visitors Bureau said.

The house is located at the corner of Butler and Denkler, which is right off of Mark Twain Avenue.

But the problem is that there isn't a place for charter and tour buses to either park or turn around. So that presents a real problem to the CVB to get people to the house.

"There is just no place to turn around. It's just not feasible for them to go to the Molly Brown. There might be options, maybe we can consider shuttles, working with someone with shuttles. But we are looking into options on how we can better promote the Molly Brown," said Bryant.

Bryant said this year, their attendance from May until now is at about 1,325.

Last year, the attendance compared to the same time was at about 1,400.

From when the museum opened earlier this year to the end of June, there was a positive balance for the budget showing a profit of $1,045.

But from July 1, 2012 until the end of September, there was a loss of $5,682, which ends up with a loss for the year at about $4,600.

The season runs from May first to the end of October. But Bryant points out that although the season is nearly over, the house still has some expenses for the entire year, although there isn't any income during the winter months. She said she hopes with more planning and more promotion, attendance and the budget will be up for 2013.