I’ve always been a big fan of the Newseum. It’s a fantastic museum in Washington, DC that teaches about the history of news in a way that is interactive and fun. There are loads of hands-on activities that both kids and adults will love, like touch-screen kiosks that allow visitors to be reporters or photographers, as well as news desks for reporting the news.
I also love reading the front pages of daily newspapers that are displayed just outside the Newseum. It’s fun to read the headlines of the day as reported from various corners of the country and the world. At the Newseum, you’ll also find a permanent exhibit dedicated to 9/11 that has on display front pages from around the world dated September 12, 2001 with the first newspaper reports of the terror attacks.
Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to check out “Anchorman: The Exhibit.” On display through August 31, 2014, movie fans will love taking a look at film props, like Ron Burgundy’s suit and Brian Fantana’s Sex Panther cologne, but the exhibit is much more than a tribute to the movie. A large part of the exhibit is focused on the news-making environment of the 1970s. In fact, much of what takes place in the movie isn’t too far from the truth as it relates to the role of women in the newsroom and how eyewitness news was promoted in that decade.
When you enter the exhibit, you are greeted by a touch-screen that enables you to “ask” Ron Burgundy questions, like “How did you feel when you first heard about this exhibit?” That was a lot of fun for the kids to touch the questions and hear the answers. We also got to read about other funny fake newscasters, like Ted Baxter of The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Kent Brockman of The Simpsons.
We then walked down the display to learn more about the movie characters and see the props as we read up on the “real story” of how women made inroads in broadcasting in the 1970s and how news teams were promoted as one big happy family. Some on-air anchors wed, while others split up, but still remained amicable on-camera.
The exhibit is small, but before you leave the Newseum, make sure your kids take a turn reading the news in the anchor chair or reporting the weather in front of the weather map that’s part of the Anchorman exhibit. You’ll also find a variety of other stations adjacent to the exhibit where kids can sit and report the news from Newseum TV news desks.
Disclaimer: I was provided with two complimentary Newseum tickets. However, I love, love the Newseum and all opinions expressed here are my own.