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Sunday, December 08, 2002

WelchEvents Re-Cap

A Trip to the Southwest Museum, Los Angeles

Today was a wonderful day to make our first trip to the Southwest Museum. Every year they hold a Holiday Community day where they offer free admission and have some small events for kids. This allowed us some time to wander about the galleries while also giving Joe some "kid time."

The museum is larger than I imagined. Due to the layout of the building (an LA Historic Landmark) it is like you are discovering hidden little gems as the galleries extend from one to another. The basketry storage and study area was a particularly wonderful find. It has beautiful examples of all the main basketry types and information on how each is made. The museum hosts special events on a regular basis, including a native artist fair once a year where you can purchase goods directly from the artist.

The museum store has an excellent collection of books and art work. Access to the store is free any time during museum hours.

Parking is free, convenient and plentiful, and offers wonderful views of the surrounding city. There is no food service at the museum, but you can bring a lunch for munching in the courtyard or hit one of the local businesses nearby. I noticed today that the new Pasadena rail line will have a station just across the street from the museum entrance. It is a bit of a hike up the hill to the museum, but this station should provide easier mass transit access to the museum.

I was a little disappointed that there were not more people at the museum on a day like today. I always use free museum days as a way of visiting a new place. It allows me an introduction to the museum while also ensuring that I haven't wasted my admission fee if Joe is not as entertained as I am.

Regular admission is only $6, so the museum is a good deal any time. I recommend that you visit, especially if you have specific interest in the native cultures of the American and Canadian West. It is a great way to spend an afternoon.


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