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Best Museums to Check Out in Alabama

 

By Amber Bara

1.) United States Space and Rocket Center – Huntsville, Alabama

Whether you would like to experience the Mars Climbing Wall or to try out the G-Force Accelerator, the U.S. Space and Rocket Center will be a fun time. The Center is one of Alabama’s most famous museums as science and space-lovers alike travel from around the world to visit. The Center also serves as NASA’s Visitor Center.  It offers day camps where trainees choose from three distinct camp options: Space, Aviation or Robotics. Each camp offers a variety of learning opportunities that children can apply to their future goals and love of science. 

On Saturday, March 14, the Center will celebrate Albert Einstein’s Birthday and Pi Day.  There will be a lot of festivities, including hula-hoop competitions, a pie toss, and a birthday celebration with Professor Einstein himself! If you are planning to stay over night in the area, the U.S. Space and Rocket Center has partnered with area hotels to provide an exclusive rate for guests who wish to stay overnight in the Huntsville community. Further information about lodging, camps, exhibits, education, and simulations can be found on the Center’s website:  http://www.rocketcenter.com 

2.)  Alabama Sports Hall of Fame – Birmingham, Alabama 

The slogan of the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame proudly states, “The State of Alabama is Made of Champions!!!” And this amazing museum works to showcase all of Alabama’s many athletic celebrities and it has become a benchmark for other Sports Museums across the country. The museum exhibits over 5,000 sports artifacts elegantly displayed in over 33,000 square feet. Out of ESPN’s list of the Top 100 athletes of the 20th Century, five out of the top 15 greatest ever are in the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame, these include: Jesse Owens, Hank Aaron, Joe Louis, Willie Mays, and Carl Lewis. 

For more information on Hall of Fame events, please see their website.  http://ashof.org 

3.)  International Motorsports Hall of Fame – Talladega, Alabama

The International Motorsports Hall of Fame in Talladega is the Canton, Ohio, of motorsports, the website boasts. The inductees enshrined in this facility are the best of the best in motorsports. The museum tour is a walking, self-guided tour that takes approximately an hour to complete. In addition to the three exhibit halls and pavilion area, the Motorsports Hall of Fame also includes the McCaig-Wellborn Motorsports Research Library, a 3,000 square foot space with over 14,000 volumes of books, magazines and other research materials (open weekdays only). It may be the most comprehensive collection of motorsports information on Earth. For more on the International Motorsports Hall of Fame and Talladega, please visit the following website: http://www.motorsportshalloffame.com 

4.)  Mobile Medical Museum – Mobile, Alabama

The Mobile Medical Museum houses a collection of artifacts and documents that were gifted by the daughter of James F. Heustis, M.D. (1828-1891), a native Mobilian with an outstanding medical career. There are approximately 100 artifacts and documents in the initial collection. Some notable exhibits include: Civil War surgical kits, instruments used during the popular phlebotomy, and the vintage 1930’s replica of a physician’s treatment room.

This museum is not only a museum of medical artifacts; it is a showcase piece itself. The historic Vincent/Doan house is listed on the Historic America Buildings Survey of the National Parks and is included on the National Register of Historic Places. The structure was initially used as a residence built by Captain Benjamin Vincent in 1827 and is a brilliant example of period architecture. Come see all that this cool niche museum has to offer!  http://www.mobilemedicalmuseum.com/default.htm 

5.) Alabama Music Hall of Fame – Tuscumbia, Alabama

The South has some great musical artists, and the Alabama Music Hall of Fame looks to celebrate Alabamians who have had a significant impact upon music industry. As you start your tour, you will be greeted by a wax figure of Nat King Cole and continue your journey through Alabama music history. During your tour, you will find recording equipment used in many famous studios and instruments used by infamous artists. In the Rhythm and Blues section you will find stage outfits, gold records, and a trumpet used by Erskine Hawkins, as well as other artifacts. There are various events, as well, that the museum houses including concerts and induction ceremonies. For a list of upcoming events, please see their webpage.  http://www.alamhof.org

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