Just because you’re hunkered down, typing furiously under the kitchen table, desperately trying to convince your distant, virtual boss that you really are working from home, doesn’t mean you can’t visit your favorite car museum. Both the Mullin Automotive Museum in Oxnard, California, and The Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles are offering virtual tours of their fabulous collections.
The Mullin just webcast its first tour on its Instagram page (@mullinmuseum), and it was almost as good as being there. The only thing missing was that old car smell. An entertaining and knowledgeable docent at the museum walked viewers around the Talbots Lago and Delahayes on the museum’s main floor, dispensing equal parts knowledge and humor as he went. We only got word of it 16 minutes before it started, so couldn’t get the word out to you, the Autoweek readers. However, Friday there will be another Mullin tour (with more in the works). Friday’s will cover not only the Citroens of the museum, but the many and wonderful Bugatti cars there, as well as the lesser-known Bugatti furniture upstairs (the Bugatti family started out making furniture, remember). Viewers are encouraged to send in their questions for the tour guide, who will answer them as he goes along.
Even without the coronavirus it was never exactly easy to see the Mullin collection. It was officially open to the public only every other Saturday, and visitors were encouraged to book tickets in advance. Now you can enjoy the show from the comfort of whatever hermetically sealed bomb shelter you are calling home right now. Just log on to Instagram and call up @mullinmuseum.
Just down the 101 freeway from The Mullin is another of the world’s greatest car museums, the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. While The Pete, as its board wants you to start calling it, already announced activities for kids during the Corona Closedown, today word came that it will offer virtual tours of its famous Vault, led by collection manager Dana Williamson, a charming and handsome fellow. The first tour is scheduled for today at 2 p.m. PST, 5 p.m. EST. So you guys on the East Coast could take the tour and not be skipping out on work, technically.
“You will get to see things no tour has before, going under the hoods and even inside some of the vehicles,” The Pete promises. “In addition to this, Michael will take you to areas of the vault that are typically restricted to the public.
“The 60-70-minute tour will cover the gems of the Vault and we will have staff working to field all comments during the tour. If we don’t get to your comment or cover a particular vehicle, we will respond to all questions after the tour ends. The tours are live, so please make sure to comment if you have questions, and we’ll try our best to get to them.”
The only drawback is that each virtual Vault tour costs $3. But organizers point out that $3 is an 86% discount over the price of a regular, walking tour of the Vault (someone do the math). Plus, that money goes to maintaining the collection and supporting the staff while the museum is closed to regular walk-in visitors.
“We greatly appreciate your support and thank you for being with us during this time,” The Pete says.
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