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7 Las Vegas museums specializing in the offbeat

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October 04, 2019 By John Przybys

Sure, we’ve got museums that explore art, natural history and other serious subjects. But this is Las Vegas, after all, so we’ve also got wacky, weird, sexy, shiny and strange ones, too. Here are seven spots worth a visit:

Burlesque Hall of Fame: The art and history of American burlesque are celebrated with photos and artifacts that include costumes and G-strings once worn — or just barely worn — by such legendary entertainers as Sally Rand, Gypsy Rose Lee, Dita Von Teese and Jennie Lee, the burlesque pioneer whose own items were the foundation of the museum’s collection. Don’t miss museum programs that explore such topics as feminism in burlesque. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays. $15, $12 for Nevada residents, $10 for seniors, students and military. 1027 S. Main St., Suite 110. burlesquehall.com

Erotic Heritage Museum: The museum features exhibits, guided tours, art and photo exhibitions, shows, workshops, lectures and activities that focus on celebrating human sexuality. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Mondays-Wednesdays and 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Thursdays-Sundays. $30, $15 for Nevada residents, and $10 for students, seniors and military. Must be 18 or older. 3275 Sammy Davis Jr. Drive. eroticmuseumvegas.com

Hollywood Cars Museum: This showplace of metaled muscle celebrates the best of Detroit by way of Hollywood. The museum features more than 100 cars that, in a few cases, may be more famous than the actors who drove them — from the Batmobile and a General Lee stunt car from “The Dukes of Hazzard” to a few of of Liberace’s blinged-out real-life rides. 10 a.m.-9 p.m. daily. $20. Children younger than 16 admitted free with paid adult. 5115 Dean Martin Drive, Suite 905. hollywoodcarsmuseum.com

Clark County Aviation Museum: You may already have visited the Clark County Aviation Museum without realizing it because its exhibits are on the mezzanine level of McCarran International Airport, overlooking the baggage claim area in Terminal 1, and peppered around the airport. (Additional exhibits can be seen at the North Las Vegas Airport and Henderson Executive Airport.) The museum examines the development of aviation in Southern Nevada with some neat artifacts, including the 1958 Cessna 172 above Terminal 1 baggage claim that set a “world endurance aloft” record in 1958-59 (64 days, 22 hours, 19 minutes and 5 seconds). Free. McCarran International Airport, North Las Vegas Airport and Henderson Executive Airport. mccarran.com/museum

The Neon Museum: Where else but Las Vegas would be a suitable home for a museum that celebrates the aesthetic, artistic allure of neon? The Neon Museum contains more than 200 classic neon signs from Las Vegas’ multicolored heyday. Guided tours are available, as are showings of “Brilliant!” a show that uses light projection technology to give old signs new life. 9 a.m.-7 p.m. for self-guided tours (hours vary by season and event). From $22 for self-guided tours to $42 for a guided tour plus “Brilliant!” 770 Las Vegas Blvd. North. neonmuseum.org

Pinball Hall of Fame: There’s no admission charge but bring lots of quarters to pump into the hall of fame’s extensive collection of classic pinball and video games, which mostly are from the ’50s and later. From classic pinball games to video games of more recent vintage, there’s something here to pique the interest of any game fan. Best of all, proceeds go to local charities. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Sundays-Thursday and 11 a.m.-midnight Fridays-Saturdays. Free. 1610 E. Tropicana Ave. pinballmuseum.org

Zak Bagans’ The Haunted Museum: Last but in no way least, this is a conglomeration of creepy collectibles assembled by Zak Bagans, host of Travel Channel’s “Ghost Adventures.” It’s the eerie epitome of offbeat museums in Southern Nevada, and walking — carefully, if you’ve got any sense about you — from room to room is a memorable experience for bold adventurers and fraidy-cats. The collection includes many allegedly haunted pieces, including the Dybbuk Box, which is said to contain a malevolent spirit, and Peggy, a creepy doll that’ll inspire nightmares. 1-9 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays-Saturdays and noon-8 p.m. Sunday. $44, $38 for Nevada residents, and $38 for seniors and military. No one under under age 16 admitted. 600 E. Charleston Blvd. thehauntedmuseum.com


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