The Museum of Broadcast Communications

Near North Side

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In a Nutshell

Artifacts and digitized recordings detail the history of radio and television & interactive station lets visitors anchor their own newscast.

The Fine Print

Promotional value expires Feb 20, 2013. Amount paid never expires. Limit 1 per person, may buy 1 additional as a gift. Limit 1 per visit. Valid only for option purchased. New members only for membership option. Merchant is solely responsible to purchasers for the care and quality of the advertised goods and services.

History tends to repeat itself, which means there’s a good chance you’ll get run over by another war elephant. Learn from the past with this Groupon.

Choose Between Two Options

$10 for admission for two (up to a $24 value)
$15 for a one-year individual membership (a $30 value)

  • Free admission for one year
  • Half off admission to all public programs
  • 10% discount at museum store
  • 10% discount at Abt Electronics<p>

Museum of Broadcast Communications

From the first televised presidential debates between Kennedy and Nixon to Neil Armstrong using his smartphone to check in at the moon, some of society’s most formative moments are products of major advances in communication technology. In its collection of nearly 100,000 hours of digitized television and radio broadcasts and more than 1,800 artifacts—including the camera that broadcast the Kennedy-Nixon debate—the Museum of Broadcast Communications immortalizes the progression of media formats and their place in history. Besides historic newsreels and pivotal artifacts, the museum’s curators have equally embraced the light-hearted side of communications, with collections of puppets and props from classic children’s television shows and a compendium of television commercials dating back 60 years.

Museum of Broadcast Communications

From the first televised presidential debates between Kennedy and Nixon to Neil Armstrong using his smartphone to check-in at the moon, some of society's most formative moments are products of major advances in communication technology. In its collection of nearly 100,000 hours of digitized television and radio broadcasts and more than 1,800 artifacts—including the camera that broadcast the Kennedy-Nixon debate—the Museum of Broadcast Communications immortalizes the progression of media formats and their place in history. Besides historic newsreels and pivotal artifacts, the museum's curators have equally embraced the light-hearted side of communications, with collections of puppets and props from classic children's television shows and a compendium of television commercials dating back 60 years. Those who grew up in the Chicagoland area will recognize artifacts from locally filmed WGN programs such as Bozo's Circus and Garfield Goose and Friends. Several characters from The Ray Ranyer Show spark fond memories, most notably his beloved canine puppet, Cuddly Dudley. Additionally, a compendium of television commercials dating back 60 years.

Elsewhere, a 17-foot tall neon and steel media tower makes for great King Kong reenactments, and features 36 monitors as well as vintage control room equipment. The interactivity continues in the television studio, where visitors can tape their own newscasts. While museum guests are free to explore permanent exhibits in the National Radio Hall of Fame, which houses artifacts from The Jack Benny Program and the original ventriloquist dummies from The Charlie McCarthy Show, they're also encouraged to check out new summer exhibits such as The Life & Times of Gary Coleman.

Customer Reviews

Spent much more time there than we had planned. Great place to check out to revisit radio and television history.
Lynne G. · May 9, 2013
We had a great time and didn't even have time in 2 hours to see everything. It was such a wonderful trip down memory lane. We will definitely go back again.
Nancy Y. · February 24, 2013
Very interesting.
Nancy G. · February 20, 2013

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