Puppies on Friday

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The staff here at the American Treasure Tour is full of love.  We love all sorts of stuff - different styles of music, classic cars, clowns.  We don't always agree on specifics, though.  For example, Ari's into reggae music, Isaac loves classical, Ginni leans towards country, and Ross is a fan of alternative (we're not exactly sure what that means, but whatever).  But there is one thing we all agree on is that we. love. puppies. Puppies of all ages, not just the young ones. And the American Treasure Tour happens to be located within just a few hundred yards of the best place to see some of the most amazing puppies in the United States - at least for one weekend. 

The National Dog Show, hosted by the Kennel Club of Philadelphia, is happening at the Philadelphia Expo Center this weekend!  (It will be broadcast on television on Thanksgiving)!  Come see the wonderful, beautiful dogs, then show your ticket stubs at the American Treasure Tour for $2.00 off admission.  You won't see any adorable puppies at the Tour, but what you will see is positively astounding!

http://nds.nationaldogshow.com/kcp.php

Full Throttle Thursday

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The American Treasure Tour is, among other things, all about classic cars.  We love cars, trucks, motorcycles, pretty much anything that goes "vroom"!  Today, we would like to call out one of our favorite trucks in the collection:  a 1945 Dodge Pick-up.  Think about the year:  1945.  Tough year.  World War II would not end until September, with the signing of the peace treaty between the United States and Japan. Prior to then, all production was focused on the war effort.  Transportation technology improved substantially during the war; however, since there was no such thing as civilian vehicle production between 1942 and 1945 to speak of, it did not get reflected in the industry until often years after the war ended.  This Dodge was designed based on 1939 blueprints, so, while it is a rare example of a 1945 vehicle, there is nothing truly original about it.  That wouldn't happen until automotive engineers had a chance to truly concentrate on peacetime technology.

Come to the American Treasure Tour for this and all the other wonderful vehicles we have on display in our Toy Box!

Wacky Wednesday

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The American Treasure Tour is always proud to honor our nation's first responders. They unquestionably hold some of the most crucial jobs in keeping us safe as a nation. That being the case, you may wonder why we talk about them in the same breath as "Wacky Wednesday." We're not really sure, honestly, but we do think our first responder pictured here is kinda silly.  To be honest, I wouldn't really count on him to be anything but cute.  He is sitting in the driver's seat of an actual electric transportation device used by first responders, though.

We hope you enjoy our Dalmatian puppy Fido, and never forget to thank your local first responders for what they do.

Tuesday's Tunes

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There is music everywhere!  The American Treasure Tour has music in all its shapes and sizes - instruments, music boxes, mechanical music machines, record albums (and cylinders!), audiocassettes, 8-tracks, flash drives.  You name it, it's here. Our record album collection is pretty special because we get to honor the great musicians of the twentieth century. We try to honor them all here, but we can really only highlight one act at a time for fear of overwhelming you. So today, we would like to call out Englebert Humperdinck!

No, we're not talking about the German composer who died in 1922, but rather the former Arnold George Dorsey who borrowed the Humperdinck name for his own singing career.  Born in 1936, he is still going strong, performing his classics at concert halls, casinos and other destinations across the country and overseas.  Enjoy!

Mondays at the Museum

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So here is a very real scenario that some of you may have to address one day.  You've just spent your morning at the American Treasure Tour.  You had a lot of fun - it was interesting, your guide on the tram ride was informative, funny, and amazingly cute - but you still have some time to explore the region and you don't know what to do next.  Of course you're hungry, so you try out the Bistro at Arnold's, on the opposite side of the building from the Treasure Tour.  

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You COULD spend your afternoon at Arnold's Family Fun Center, which is an excellent option if you like to have, as the name implies, fun.  They have electric indoor go-karts, bowling, arcade games, a carousel, Skee-Ball, duckpin bowling, bumpe--you know what?  Describing it here, the very real question that comes up is why you would consider going someplace else besides Arnold's?  You're already here, since you had lunch at the Bistro.  Just get one of those plastic card thingy-mabobs from the check-in desk at Arnold's and go bonkers.  They have all kinds of games for people of all ages. They're open until 9:00 p.m., so you better call your family and tell them to meet you at Arnold's because you won't be home for dinner, either.

Toys Toys Everywhere

Here's a dilemma we all either had/have/or hope to have.  It's an issue of storage. When you get too many toys, where do they go?  Do you pack them away and store them in the basement, never to enjoy them?  Do you keep them all across the living room, where they are vulnerable to being stepped on or broken?  Or do you place them in a former tire factory in a wonderfully-colored pink, red and yellow toy box?  We highly recommend the latter of the three, because that's exactly what we did.  Of course, our toy box is located in an 80,000 square foot area called the Toy Box - which is chock full of classic cars, stuffed animals, mechanical music machines, and just about anything else you can imagine that is fun.

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Kids of all ages pack away some of the coolest things they have into their toy boxes with the full intention of pulling them out whenever they have the time to play with them. Now, the picture we've included here of our toy box shows it as empty.  But it isn't empty anymore. If you want to see what's inside, come on out to the Treasure Tour in Oaks, PA to take a gander.  It's currently parked right next to where you will catch a ride on our electric tram to go through many of the other cool toys in our very special Toy Box!

Funny Friday

Do you like to have fun?  Do you like to laugh?  If you answered "No" to these questions, then you are reading the wrong blog, because we at the American Treasure Tour are all about fun and laughing and stuff.  (You can quote us on that.) In fact, we honor comedians whenever we can - they easily have one of the most difficult jobs in the world. And if you think it's easy being a comedian, try to make someone laugh who you don't know. 

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We have classic performers throughout the tour here, including some of the most famous comedy teams to ever make appearances on both the big and little screens. Ever heard of the Marx Brothers?  If you have, good.  If you haven't, you need to change that.  Groucho, Harpo and Chico are the most famous of the family, but there were also Zeppo and Gummo, too. They started on the vaudeville stage when they were kids, then moved to film in the 1930's, with some of their physical comedy staged for them by none other than Buster Keaton - another amazing funnyman! They are very silly, and much of their humor has been absorbed into the mainstream since other comedians have been inspired by them over the decades.

Full Throttle Thursday

We love cars here at the American Treasure Tour - which is likely no surprise considering just how amazing our collection of preserved classic vehicles is!  From our 1951 Crosley to our 1954 Corvette to our 1956 Thunderbird, we have all the varieties of -- oh wait.  That's not a broad range of cars, is it?  Maybe we should instead focus on the 1922 Stanley Steamer, or the 1924 Cadillac Sedan or the 1927 Willys Whippet?  I guess that's showing a little more range in what we have, but it still doesn't even address the OLD vehicles we have, like our 1905 Franklin, or our 1907 ABC - a rare car out of St. Louis, Missouri - or the 1914 Maxwell and the Woods Mobilette of the same year.  

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I guess we're starting to get a better sense of the immensity of what there is here at the Treasure Tour for the car lover, but we still haven't tapped into the era of the muscle car - our 1967 Oldsmobile Cutlass, or our 1968 Mustang or our Camaro.  You know what?  We're not going to get into every single car you'll see when you come to the American Treasure Tour.  That would be silly.  Just come and check them all out!

Wacky Wednesday

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Like SpongeBob?  We got him!  Yessiree, Bob!  All of your favorite animated characters are here at the American Treasure Tour in one form or another - we have wonderful painted images of them displayed next to our sideshow art and we have stuffed animals displayed on the floors, in the cars, on the walls and hanging from the ceiling.  Don't believe me?  Come on out and see them. But don't think that's the only sort of thing you'll find here at the American Treasure Tour - oh no!  We also have an amazing collection of mechanical music, classic automobiles, trucks and motorcycles spanning the twentieth century, and so many electric animated Santas that no chimney exists in the world big enough to stuff them all down!  

But if it's SpongeBob you're looking for, you need look no further.  Unless you're looking for the real, actual SpongeBob.  He's under the sea in the town of Bikini Bottom.  Or so we're told.  We have a team of scuba divers looking for him.  So far, no luck.

Toyful Tuesday

Yes, we know.  Toyful is not a word. But the American Treasure Tour is truly "toyful," because we are quite literally full of toys!  Toys for children of all ages, from stuffed animals that appeal to the tiniest of tots to classic automobiles that draw the eye of the wisest of our older visitors. There are plenty of items on display that appeal to children and adults, and I think most of us would agree that there is a definite charm to die-cast cars.

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Created in 1:18 scale (which means that it is eighteen times smaller than the real thing), our die-casts depict cars, trucks, motorcycles and scooters from the earliest gasoline-powered vehicle, widely considered the Benz Patent-Motorwagen designed and driven by Karl Benz in 1886, to modern race cars, sports cars, and cars for the average family.  Of course, it may prove a challenge to notice the die-cast collection at the ATT, since they are somewhat dwarfed by the other vehicles on display, but "Jeep" your eyes open!  They're there for your enjoyment!

Monday at the Museum

We here at the American Treasure Tour blog like to share the wealth.  With a nation rich in stories, we would be shortsighted to think there are no other places to visit besides just us - especially when we are only open for General Admission on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays (right now!), and Group Tours by reservation the rest of the week.  So what else can you do when you're in the neighborhood besides come to what Philadelphia Magazine awarded the Best Weird Museum of 2017?  Go to Valley Forge National Historical Park, of course!

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Valley Forge NHP is where the Continental Army encamped from December 1777 through June 1778 during the Revolutionary War. Most of the famous military leaders were there - George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr, to name just a few.  No military conflicts with the British forces occurred at what is now protected land, but something just as significant did: a ragtag army was trained and unified under the authority of German immigrant Baron von Steuben.  Want to learn more?  Check out their website: https://www.nps.gov/vafo/index.htm or, better yet, visit!  They are located just down the street from the American Treasure Tour.

Funny Friday

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We all love to laugh.  If we're wrong on that, we're not sure you want to come to the American Treasure Tour, because this place is not only a lot of fun, but it can (figuratively) tickle your funny bone, too.  We have lots of great stuff on display here, including some classic Three Stooges posters and memories - most notably of the Stooges taking a golf outing. 

Not a Stooges fan?  Don't worry, you will also see other greats of old and new throughout the collection.  The Disney family represents with the classics - Mickey, Donald, Minnie, Goofy and Pluto - as do the great characters Warner Brothers introduced us to including Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, ands many more.  We'll get into those in the coming weeks. Until then, enjoy Three Little Beers starring Larry, Moe and Curly!

Full Throttle Thursday

It's time again for the American Treasure Tour blog to delve into our automobile collection. Last week, we went modern (relatively speaking) with our 1956 Ford Fairlane.  THIS week, we're heading to the United States prior to World War II and the engineering improvements that occurred during the 1940's.

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One company that few remember today that had a significant impact on the car industry was Willys.  The car we honor today is their 1927 Whippet - considered a compact vehicle at the time (hard to imagine), some automotive historians consider this the car that compelled Henry Ford to retire production of his Model T. The popularity of the Whippet was such that Ford's need to upgrade his car technology led to the introduction of the Model A that year. That's pretty significant.  Now, jump ahead fourteen years, and Willys contracted with the U.S. government to produce an all-purpose all-terrain vehicle for the military.  General Dwight D. Eisenhower described that car, the Jeep, as one of the most important vehicles in the Allied victory!

Wonky Wednesday

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Wonky defined:  crooked; off-center; askew.  The American Treasure Tour proudly declares that we are a bit wonky.  In fact, with our recently-earned title of "Best Weird Museum" by Philly Magazine, we are downright proud to call ourselves a bit wonky. You don't believe that we're wonky?  Just because we have a world-class collection of mechanical music machines, and our classic automobiles are impressive on every level, doesn't mean we can't also be wonky, you know. One of the newest additions to the Tour that arrived last week is our oversized banana.  If you're a lover of bananas as food, please be warned: ours is not edible. In fact, he has a face.  And hair.  And a hat.  We tried to interview him for the blog, but he just kinda stared off into space.  He didn't speak, he didn't blink, he didn't move.  Maybe he's not the most animated banana you'll ever find, but he does seem to be pretty happy, judging by his big toothy smile. And the red, yellow and green colors on his hat would suggest he may be used to warmer climates - Jamaica perhaps?  Just a theory.

Turntable Tuesday

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Rhetorical question:  Who doesn't like music?  Rhetorical answer:  People who do not appreciate the finer things in life.  Music is all around us, and that is (with maybe an exception here and there) a good thing.  The American Treasure Tour is full of music - music we play for you and music on display.  Aside from our amazing mechanical music collection, we have one of the grooviest record albums you could ever hope to see, with vinyl by your favorites from the 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's, including the best in Classic Rock, Country and Western, Soundtracks and, well, you name it.  Like Willie Nelson?  We got him!  Like Englebert Humperdinck?  You're in the right place.  But please don't misunderstand us, we never promised you a rose garden....

Making It to a Museum

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Okay.  Familiar scenario.  You just spent your entire Saturday at the American Treasure Tour and your brain is saturated with fun, but you find you are still eager to learn and experience and grow. So, what do you do?  You get into your car, or whatever type of perambulator tickles your fancy, and drive.  You don't have to drive far to discover another site that is almost as cool as the ATT.  In fact, there are lots of destinations in the Philadelphia area worth your time. Today, we are going to encourage you to leave Pennsylvania - but don't worry. You can be back by dinner time, easy. We suggest you go all the way to ... Delaware!  Just outside of Wilmington proper is a museum that shares the story of the DuPont family.  No, we're not talking about Winterthur, at least not today. Nor are we talking about Longwood Gardens. We're talking about the Hagley!

The Hagley Museum is located right on the Brandywine Creek.  It was where the DuPont family first settled after coming to the United States from France, refugees from the French Revolution. It is also where they started their gunpowder business.  They built their own industrial town for lodging of their employees, and there's a mansion you can tour there.  Don't want to walk too much?  Fear not!  There's a shuttle bus that takes you from the old mill where exhibits are down to the gunpowder buildings and to the mansion. You can spend an hour or an afternoon there.

https://www.hagley.org

 

Our Favorite 45's

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Music abounds here at the American Treasure Tour, from player piano and orchestrion paper rolls to 8-track cassettes to record albums of all speeds. the 45 r.p.m. record was introduced in in 1949 on which two songs were presented - one on either side.  We love 45's here, and prove it by having them displayed throughout our Music Room.  Today, we honor a song from 1968, "A Place in the Sun," performed by Diana Ross & The Supremes AND The Temptations.  Yes, ladies and gentlemen, two great bands performing together to promote a television program that aired highlighting them both. The album Diana Ross & The Supremes Join The Temptations proved to be a big hit for Motown Records, despite (or because) all of the songs were covers of other popular musicians - "A Place In the Sun" was written by Stevie Wonder.

Funny Friday

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The American Treasure Tour is your primary destination when you need a jot of happy. We have all sort of amazing music, we have classic cars, and we have a tram to drive you through the majority of the tour so you don't have to walk!  Overlooked by many of our visitors is a poster in our Music Room that is surrounded by photographs of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, and Jean Harlow. It is a poster of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello.  Abbot is decked out in a St. Louis Wolves uniform, standing churlishly next to Costello, whose questions about the team inspired one of the classic comedy routines.

"Who's On First?" remains one of the best-known comedy routines of all time to this day; however, Bud Abbott himself confessed that it predates his famous pairing with Lou Costello. Dating to the days of vaudeville (and possibly before), comedians used language to comic affect long before the advent of radio and talking pictures. "Who's on First?" as we remember it today first became hugely popular in 1937.  Don't remember it?  Don't worry!  Here it is:

 

 

Full Throttle Thursday

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The American Treasure Tour is a great place to go for car clubs and anyone else who has a love for automobiles.  There are dozens of cars spanning the twentieth century here on display, including a classic just over sixty years old - the 1956 Ford Fairlane.  Named after the the estate Henry Ford called home, the Fairlane was produced by Ford from 1955 through 1970, although it saw many different shapes and sizes over its fifteen-year lifespan. 1956 was a great year for the Fairlane, with six different body types, including the Town Sedan.  

Take a look at the attached image of our Fairline. Behind it, you can see some of the other delights on display, including a giant die (or dice, depending on your preference), the back of a large blue M & M and some of our circus midway stuffed animals. You never know exactly what to expect when you come to the American Treasure Tour!

Clown Cream Cone

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The American Treasure Tour blog team is well aware of what's happening these days.  We're on top of things. And one thing we know is that clowns are getting a pretty bad rap right now, in large part thanks to a certain Stephen King movie about a horrible monster creature that takes the shape of a clown and does terrible things. Well, we are here to tell you it's not right to assume that all clowns are scary.  Most of them want only to make people happy, to make kids laugh, and to wow their parents. So, for the record, it's time to stop with the anti-clown stuff.  Okay?

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We admit that we side with clowns because they have a presence here at the American Treasure Tour, and we are going to share with you one of the more oddball clowns we have on display. He takes the form of an ice cream cone, and he is propped on the nose of another one of our clowns - a fun dish-balancing clown in bright red and yellow. Wanna see him go and balance? You'll have to come to the American Treasure Tour on one of our General Admission days (Thursday through Saturday, 10am to 3pm) and ask the attendant in the Music Room. It's a treat!!!1