Sight, the workhorse of the five senses, puts in too many hours keeping man from falling in manholes. Reward the most overworked sense with today's Groupon: for $6, you get two adult admissions, plus 10% off at the gift shop at the American Banjo Museum, located downtown. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Sundays from noon until 5 p.m.
Two floors spanning 21,000 square feet exhibit the American Banjo Museum's more than 300 shiny string-boxes and other instruments, providing tune-lovers and armchair folklorists with a rich history of American music. Every era of banjo evolution is represented with corresponding displays on the first floor, from its beginnings among slaves in the 17th century, to its ornate four-string iterations in the Jazz Age, to its proliferation among street-prophets as a dowsing-rod for buried sandwiches. Head to the special gallery to scope the pristine collection of Gibson Mastertone banjos, including an extremely rare pre-war five-stringer valued at more than $175,000, or learn about the luminaries of the plectrum at the Banjo Hall of Fame.
Stop by the Banjo Museum on select days and you'll be able to catch nimble-fingered living legends hone their craft live onstage. From its beginnings 12 years ago in Guthrie, Oklahoma, to its current clawhammer fortress, the museum has also amassed an archive featuring thousands of audio and video recordings, periodicals, and photographs, which you can view by appointment.
Though the American Banjo Museum hasn't been reviewed much, Making Music magazine featured the museum soon after it opened.
- The new state-of-the-art American Banjo Museum tells the complete story of the instrument’s 350-year history in the US. – Cherie Yurco, Making Music