Handbook shows there's a hall of fame around most every corner

September 17, 1995|By John Bordsen | John Bordsen,Knight-Ridder News Service

As the futurist think tank known as Danny & the Juniors predicted in 1958, "Rock 'n' roll is here to stay." The proof is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, which opened earlier this month in Cleveland.

Multimedia blitz to the contrary, the world doesn't entirely spin around pop music. In fact, the world of halls of fame doesn't either.

Here's a look at some distinctive halls where the lines aren't quite so long.

The information that follows is distilled from the just-out "Volvo Guide to Halls of Fame" (Paul Dickson and Robert Skole, Living Planet Press, $12.95). It's subtitled "The Traveler's Handbook of North America's Most Inspiring and Entertaining Attractions" and offers a sometimes nifty, sometimes strange look at about 220 honored places.

* National Agricultural Aviation Museum and Hall of Fame, Jackson, Miss.

The full name is the Jim Buck Ross Mississippi Agriculture and Forestry/National Agricultural Aviation Museum and Hall of Fame, but what we're looking at is crop dusting -- actual planes and spray systems, as well as photos. Also here: a collection of 20,000 arrowheads.

This museum is at 1150 Lakeland Drive (on the grounds of the Heritage Center arboretum/history complex), Jackson, Miss. 39216. Hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. Admission (to entire complex): $3; $2.75 for 60 and older; $1 for ages 6-18; 5 and younger, free. Details: (800) 844-TOUR, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays.

* Barbie Doll Hall of Fame and Doll Studio, Palo Alto, Calif.

Barbie was first introduced in 1959, and this is the shrine to the figurine that has since become America's favorite doll.

You'll find examples of almost every one of the hundreds of Barbie models ever made; her pals and clothes are here, too.

The Barbie Doll Hall of Fame is at 433 Waverley St., Palo Alto, Calif. 94301. Hours: 1:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday (also open 10 a.m.-noon Saturday). Admission: $4 (all ages). Details: (415) 326-5841, noon-8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

* Bull Hall of Fame, Plain City, Ohio

This institution honors a dozen male bovines for their high-quality semen and output. Marble tombstones around the grounds mark where each stud is buried. More than 1,000 live bulls, each a potential hall-of-famer, are in residence here.

The Bull Hall of Fame is on U.S. Route 42, in Ohio's Union County. Hours: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. weekdays; call for tour appointment. Admission: free. Details: (614) 873-4683, hall hours.

* National Business Hall of Fame, Chicago

This portion of Chicago's fabled Museum of Science and Industry is sponsored by National Junior Achievement; inductees are selected by Fortune magazine. The 166 men and women honored here range from Alexander Hamilton (first U.S. secretary of the Treasury) to Frederick Maytag (the washing-machine man) and L. L. Bean. There are try-your-hand-at-management computer games to investigate, too.

The Museum of Science and Industry is at 57th street and Lake Shore drive in Chicago. Hours: 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays, to 5:30 p.m. Saturday through Sunday and holidays. Admission: $6; $5 for 65 and older; $2.50 for ages 5-12; 4 and younger, free. Details: (312) 684-1414, anytime.

* Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame, Swift Current, Saskatchewan

Our neighbor to the north has its own country heroes, from Hank Snow to Ian Tyson (of Ian and Sylvia). They're honored here, through portraits and personal effects.

You'll find this hall at 1100 Fifth Ave. N.E., Swift Current, Saskatchewan S9H 4X7. Admission: $4; $3 for senior citizens.

* U.S. Chess Federation Hall of Fame, Washington, D.C.

Here's a large -- and quiet -- room with plaques and photos of 21 players and displays illustrating the history of American chess, from 1492 onward. There are also chess books and a chess computer to play.

The Chess Federation Hall of Fame is at 1501 M St. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20005. Hours: 5:30 p.m.-9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, noon-6 p.m. Saturday. Admission: free. Details: (202) 857-4922, hall hours.

* Clown Hall of Fame, Delavan, Wis.

The original Ringling brothers were from Wisconsin; circus roots still run deep. The Clown Hall of Fame offers shows (Clown Encounters) in a 180-seat theater; inductees honored range from Emmett Kelly Sr. to Red Skelton. The Clown Hall of Fame is at 114 N. Third St., Delavan, Wis. 53115. Hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. daily, through Dec. 31. Admission: $2.50; 5 and younger, free. Weekend clown show: $3.50; $3 for ages 4-18 and 55 and older; 3 and younger, free. Details: (414) 728-9075, 1 a.m.-5 p.m. daily.

* National Cowgirl Hall of Fame, Hereford, Texas

Mattie Goff Newcome (a trick rodeo rider of the '20s), country star Patsy Cline, Annie Oakley and others are honored in this small-though-crammed facility. The 126 honorees are celebrated with artifacts, duds, paintings, etc.

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