Not Just Another Day at the Museum #AAM2013

When is the last time you've visited a museum?  Be honest.

Which of the following quotes best describe your perception of these institutions:

A.  The Museum is not meant either for the wanderer to see by accident or for the pilgrim to see with awe. It is meant for the mere slave of a routine of self-education to stuff himself with every sort of incongruous intellectual food in one indigestible meal.
-G. K. Chesterton
B. Attitudes to museums have changed. If it had Marilyn Monroe's knickers or Laurence Olivier's jockstrap they would flock to it.
-Jonathan Miller
C. That which, perhaps, hears more nonsense than anything in the world, is a picture in a museum.
-Edmond de Goncourt

If you selected A....your're going to love this post!
If you selected B....your're going to like this post!
If you selected C....your're going to completely rethink today's museum!
Whichever option you chose, I hope I can enlighten and entertain.

For the majority of us, unless you're a trivia fact freak or history buff you probably don't think much about museums unless you're forced to go via family outing or school field trips.

Well today I volunteered at the 2013 American Alliance of Museums Annual Meeting & Museum Expo in Baltimore, MD.  After work I was granted a day pass to attend the expo. There's much to be excited about with today's technological leaps and eager & knowledgeable vendors and subject matter experts there to meet museum needs.  I'm going to take you on a photo and video journey of some of the most exciting booths I saw today. Oh and at the end of this post I'll hold a giveaway for some cool AAMA expo swag.

I wish my local museum had this...ALL OF THIS!

#10 John Cox's Creature Workshop
John Cox! OMG, where do I start.  Remember the croc from the Peter Pan movie. Yep, this company produced that.  His lovely wife at this booth even told me that he's won awards from his work in the movie Babe.  I was like "hold up, those weren't real animals"! You'd be surprised by which ones were real and which one's were animated monsters!

This is a traveling exhibit, I would go completely fan-girl over if they ever came to my local museum. Follow their blog!

Story Kiosk "Popup Exhibit Projects" is sure to be a hit with the younger crowd and even the "crafty kid" in us adults.

Here's the rules:
--> Make a Paper Puppet
--> Make a Movie
--> Have Fun !

Look what I made:

(Oh and the fun and applications of this booth doesn't just stop there.  There's much more.)
Look...old fashioned Animation: 

I was driving around the neighborhood and decided to take a few pictures.  Just Kidding...look closer.  These are miniature historic and modern replicas created by the guys at Jambrean. Their attention to detail is mind blowing.

#7 OmniGlobe 
Look at my footage and see what this 48" globe can do with commands from the touchscreen.

#6 Steel Art Trees / Nature Maker 
They are not "just trees".  They are one of a kind works of art hand sculpted by a team of 15 artist. 

These are used in museums, educational facilities and the zoo.

Here's an App & program developer looking to make every museum experience a game. Who doesn't like scavenger hunts.

Trio-tech is a manufacturer of interactive attractions.  I got the chance to try out their interactive theater in an experience that engaged almost all the senses. I felt the sway of a 18th century pirate's ship in the mist of a torturous storm while seated in the plush recliner seat.  I connected the twinkling stars to form constellations with the wand.  I deep sea dived into the watery abyss in search of treasure and saw my own air bubbles with the 3D glasses. And I did all this while learning fun facts about nautical navigation, astrology, and archaeology. It was far too dark to get live footage of this, but I got a few images.

Oh this company is very good. Perhaps my camera didn't do them justice, but before the reps started talking, from a distance, I couldn't tell who was real people and who were made to look like real people. 

"Thumb" Tacks...get!

 Look! Twins!

This company offers computer interactive solutions such as the half globe shaped system below.  It was so much fun to play a video game on this baby,but of course it can be used for leaning also. 

Beg & plead for your museum to get this system!  Loads of fun. The actual game I was playing on this device is called Proun

#1 Dinosaurs Unearthed
This is a traveling exhibit. I visited this booth three times!

Check out their website here to see when they're visiting a museum near you.

The images were App interactive!  How cool!

There were so, so many awesome booths that I would bore you to tears if I went through them all right now.You simply HAD to be there!  I spent four hours in awe wondering this expo after my shift! Later in the week I plan to revisit this topic in a show & tell format to share the other great booths.

One of the highlights aside from the above was leaving my mark on the columns of unforgettable museum experiences.

I also got the chance to talk and get the scoop on upcoming attractions:

Picture "Alexandrer McQueen in MidWest America".  Hey it can happen.  In Fact, it will happen. During a chit chat with an attendee I discovered that The World Chess Hall of Fame Museum in Saint Louis will be hosting a very "Haute" fashion exhibit, with modern highly sought and avant garde designers, in the near future.   Check out their site for more information.  I'm willing to travel the distance to see it.  Are you?

Now for the goodies!
Do you like my swag?

If so, two lucky winners will get their pick in a custom built swag pack.

Note: Each swag pack can only contain 4 items. 

To be fair, if multiple of the same is pictured, then the winner can only select one of that particular item.
Both winners will be emailed at the same time, the first to respond takes precedence.   Therefore if both selected the same item, and there's only one, then the last responded will be asked to select a different prize from the pictured items.

Special Thanks to the Following for these great novelties:
The Inside Tack (Tile Art)
John Cox's Creature Workshop (Book-The Secrets Behind How To Make A Monster)
Solid Light (USB Drive)
Dinosaurs Unearthed (App interactive buttons & keychains)

Thanks also to all the wonderful booths that took the time to present their company to me.

Oh I also got a prize that I'll show,but not giveaway:
I know...I'm such a tease!

That's all for me beautiful people!  
Thanks for reading this post & good luck on the giveaway!



  1. Last time I was at a museum was about a year ago. They just don't have them where I live except one and I have seen in.....a year ago.

    My best experience in a museum though

    "Twas a star gazingly adventurous time!"

  2. The last time I was to a museum was this past fall, to the museum in Milwaukee. My girlfriend took me there on a date (I study museum studies in college, so it was perfect).

    My most unforgettable experience, in six words, is:

    "Got sick, threw up by dinosaurs."

    I was maybe 6 and got to see SUE in Chicago, and I got sick all over the place. Plus side- I got a free SUE shirt!

  3. WOW! Looks amazing. :)

    I spent much of my childhood in London with mum looking around all the various museums ~ from the Natural History to the V&A to the science museum! Whenever i re-visit these wonderful museums i feel such a warmth familiarity and is exciting.

  4. I'm a historian so I go to a museum a lot but most are run by local rural historical societies. Ours could use some snaz in the displays to bring young people in. Thanks for sharing all of this, it's awesome.


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