Favorite Museums for International Museum Day
International Museum Day is a holiday that shouldn’t be overlooked! May 18th, the whole world celebrates and values the importance of museums for the development of society. A museum stands for cultural exchange and enrichment, mutual understanding, cooperation and peace among peoples. As Tuscaloosa is a city with a long and rich history, important cultural legacies and a prosperous art scene, there are numerous amazing museums in town that are worth a visit – not only on National Museum Day! These are our favorites:
Tuscaloosa Museum of Art
This former private collection, amassed by Jack Warner, turned into a Museum in 2003 and is truly a treasure within the community. You can marvel at approximately 1000 pieces of fine and decorative arts, and also the building itself is special: It’s an Asian-inspired complex that also contains a beautiful garden! As the “Home of the Westervelt Collection,” the museum holds one of the greatest private collections of American Arts in the nation.
Mercedes-Benz Visitor Center
Even if cars are sometimes more of a man’s passion, this museum is worth a visit for everybody! Take a short drive east of Tuscaloosa and enter the ground of Mercedes-Benz U.S. International – the only Mercedes factory in the United States! The visitor center is located in its own building and contains the museum and a souvenir shop. Stroll through the stunning exhibits and discover the history and tradition of this classic car brand, and you will walk dreaming of owning a beautiful Mercedes! German engineering meets Southern hospitality – a successful combination!
Alabama Museum of Natural History
Usually, the huge dinosaur bones in the Alabama Museum of Natural History don’t come alive like they do in Hollywood, but it doesn’t make this museum any less exciting! For more than 150 years, it offers permanent and temporary exhibits, collections and programs to learn everything about Alabama’s fascinating natural history! Among the obvious highlights, like the dinosaurs, there are many exciting things to discover. Recently added: An Augmented Reality sandbox, in which you can create topography models out of sands that are then augmented by a digital simulation! Give it a try and go explore!
Paul W. Bryant Museum
One of the most important aspects of Tuscaloosa Culture is, of course, football! When it comes to fall season, dixie’s football pride is present all over the city and everybody comes together to be a part of the gameday experience. To feel that spirit even in the off season, you shouldn’t miss a visit to the Paul W. Bryant Museum! It opened in 1988 and since then, houses the history of Alabama football, with a special emphasis on the legendary coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. Permanent and changing exhibits, including Bear Bryant’s original office, can be visited daily from 9 am to 4 pm – just as on National Museum Day on May 18th!
Children’s Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa
You can’t start early enough to introduce your kids to arts and culture! Take the National Museum Day as an occasion and take them out to Tuscaloosa’s Children’s Hands-On Museum. This unique museum in downtown is tailor made for the little ones, to introduce them to arts, crafts, and exciting exhibits in an interactive and exploring way! It provides fun for kids of all ages and they will never ever get the idea of calling a museum boring afterward!
Written By: Katharina Horvath – Intern