“Auto Museum in Los Angeles, CA”
On June 11, 1994, Margie and Robert E. Petersen fulfilled a long-time dream when they became founding benefactors to start the Petersen Automotive Museum, donating $5 million to the Los Angeles County National History Museum. In April, 2000, the Petersens contributed an additional $24.8 million dollars to the Los Angeles County Natural History Museum to retire the bond debt and establish the Petersen Automotive Museum Foundation as an independent non-profit organization. Overall, their gifts to the Petersen Automotive Museum total over $30 million, one of the largest gifts to any museum in the United States. Today, the Petersen Automotive Museum stands as the nation’s premiere automotive museum, serving thousands of visitors each year. The Petersen Automotive Museum is dedicated to the exploration and presentation of the automobile and its impact on American life and culture using Los Angeles as the prime example. Encompassing more than 300,000 square feet, its exhibits and lifelike dioramas feature more than 150 rare and classic cars, trucks and motorcycles. Covering four floors, the facility features permanent exhibits on the first floor that trace the history of the automobile. Visitors are invited to walk through, not by, exhibits and dioramas and experience settings of early Los Angeles where the world’s first shopping district was designed. The second floor presents five rotating galleries with state-of-the-art displays of racecars, classic cars, vintage motorcycles, concept cars, celebrity and movie cars, and auto design and technology. The May Family Discovery Center is located on the third floor. Designed to spark interest in science by way of the automobile, the 6,500 square-foot, interactive “hands-on” learning center teaches children basic scientific principles by explaining the fundamental functions of a car. A spectacular all-glass penthouse conference center, Founder’s Lounge and kitchen, comprise the fourth floor, which is available for special events and functions.
Nice to see, spending 1 hours is enough to make a quick tour.
The top floor has (currently at least) exhibits of some regular cars (right now, Japanese cars from the '50s & 60s) and one-offs: movie cars and concept cars; it also has a display of motorcycles. The next floor down shows engineering matters, race cars and alternative-fuel systems. The ground floor has changing exhibits, right now dedicated to Porsche. Despite the large size of the place, there really wasn't as much of interest to me on display. Still, it took me two hours to go through the place, and I got about 30 pictures that may or may not be worth keeping.
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Petersen Automotive Museum
- Sun, Mon, Wed - Sat: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
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