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Friday, September 21, 2007

Barker Character, Comic, and Cartoon Museum

Orphan Annie’s Ovaltine shaker mug and decoder prize is here, along with TV-show theme lunch boxes, just about any game, toy, or trinket you remember from your childhood. The Barker Character, Comic, and Cartoon Museum is an astoundingly detailed walk through memory lane. Your memory. Your parents’ memories. Even your grandparents. If they played as children, they played with the stuff in this fantastic museum.

The thousands of items from comic strips, cartoons, TV and advertising memorabilia have been collected by Herb and Gloria Barker. The collection is uniquely American and tells us where our heads were at, and where our hearts are still, from the late 19th Century to now.

Located in Cheshire, Connecticut, this is a museum which must be seen to be believed, and it is fascinating for the whole family. There are few museum exhibits of popular history that will engross your children as much as they do you. GI Joe, Shirley Temple, Raggedy Ann, Snoopy, board games and cereal box prizes. They’re all here.

And, you’ll be surprised at how many TV and cartoon theme songs and commercial ditties that suddenly invade your brain and make you sing a little as you move from one treasure to the next. You might have forgotten your second grade teacher’s name, but you’ll take the lyrics of the “Casper the Friendly Ghost” song to your grave.

Currently, the museum is only open Saturdays from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, until June 2008 to allow for staff to inventory the collection. Admission is free.

What to go? For more information, take a look at the museum website.

Been there? Done that? Bought the T-shirt? Let us know!

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