Want a nice outing for the Las Vegas Valley family or the newcomer to the Las Vegas area? The Clark County Museum may be the place to go. From prehistoric animals to Hoover-Dam-era housing, the museum chronicles the history of the area, a somewhat surprising history to folks who think of southern Nevada simply as the home of “sin city”.
I visited the museum last Thursday afternoon when only a few of us had chosen the museum as a destination. I had almost a private viewing, so my video is mighty quiet.
I had visited the museum last December during its annual Heritage Holidays open house when the parking lot was full (it’s a large parking lot), and volunteers hosted activities for the youngsters and served free cookies and hot chocolate. A choir sang holiday songs and plenty of holiday lights decorated the vintage homes available for viewing. (The vintage homes boast scenes of people enjoying their homes in typical ways, preparing and having dinner, playing solitaire, etc. The scenes change with the seasons.)
A number of special activities are held at the museum every year, and it’s the clever family that is a museum member and takes note of all the special events. A plaque that is barely visible when entering the museum proper pays tribute to museum founders Edith Jennings Mariano and the Henderson Chamber of Commerce. The museum was founded in 1968.
The main museum building of the 30-acre property (at 1830 S. Boulder Highway in Henderson) is relatively small, but it is filled with information. I might have wished the print on the accompanying signs was larger, but with effort I got the messages.
The highlight for many folks making a stop at the museum are visits to the many restored homes and businesses on the property decorated in period-correct furnishings. A number of the buildings feature mini-museums within them, and during my visits, recorded information helped to explain each building to visitors.
My brief video is attached, but I also suggest two longer videos made two years ago featuring museum Administrator (and frequent Pawn Stars expert) Mark Hall Patton. You’ll need a couple hours to listen to Patton, but I learned a great deal from this man who loves history.
Previous Living-Las-Vegas.com articles about the museum:
Henderson: More than a Place to Hang Your Hat, by Megan Edwards – August 5, 2013
This Old House: At Home in Henderson Townsite by Steve Fey. February 13, 2009
Clark County Museum: A Remembrance of Christmases Past by Tami Cowden. December 1, 2008