Hello everyone, my name is Brad Roop and I’m the Visitor Services Manager at the Museum. My primary responsibility is to oversee the operations of the Museum on weekends. My job is unique in that I am able to directly hear from visitors while working closely with our senior staff members. I act as a liaison by relaying important information from the weekend to the senior staff. This includes things such as new exhibit ideas from our visitors.
Over the past year, visitors have been asking about vending machines. Some visitors have wanted to know if we have any; others remember an earlier exhibit that featured them and were hoping to show them off to their family members. Several years ago, the vending machines had been featured in an open collections storage exhibit and our visitors remembered seeing them that way, so the Museum staff took note and brought back a visitor favorite, The Cooler Crowd!
The exhibit, located on the 2nd floor in our brand new O’Hara Gallery, features a variety of antique coolers and vending machines with descriptions telling the visitor about the technology used. The exhibit staff put as many coolers and vending machines in the gallery as they could, showcasing different machines from different years. Our exhibit design and interpretation concept is a bit different with this exhibition. You’ll find the vending machines speaking in first person through their text panels. As you walk in the room, you will find that some of the doors to the vending machines and coolers are left open so you can see close up what is inside. The exhibit staff designed it this way to enhance your experience! We hope you enjoy the new look!
The Cooler Crowd is a result of interactions between the visitors and staff. If you have some objects or brands you would like to see exhibited, let us know. We are always open to suggestions.