Shout Out to Plainview Clown Museum

Over Memorial Day weekend Larry and I drove to Colorado to attend my brother’s wedding. The ceremony and celebration was held in a log sided community center of a small town surrounded by the Rockies and domed by the sky Ginger and Stephen love so much. It was such a happy occasion - full of heartfelt words, laughter, new and old family and friends and dancing.

On the way, Larry and I decided to take the hypotenuse of the triangle from Minneapolis to Colorado - shorter in distance but a tiny bit longer measured by the clock. The state highway system is a stair shaped angle through the small towns of Minnesota and Nebraska with plenty of opportunities to slow down and imagine the stories behind the walls.

As the speed limit sign advised us to slow down at the border of a small Nebraska town, another sign announced an unmissable attraction ahead; Plainview Klown Doll Museum. The hours posted indicated it was open. We also read that admission was free and that Plainview is the klown kapital of Nebraska. This was a an invitation we wouldn’t refuse.

Once inside a kind and low key volunteer showed us around and told us about how the museum got started. A local woman whose portrait is pointed out with gratitude, donated her collection to the town to make a museum and many people have donated collections ever since until the museum currently displays over 7000 clowns. I can’t say for sure, because it would take many trips to take in all the dolls, but I did not see any two the same.

In general I am not a big clown fan but the number of displayed items, care of placement, the variety of faces, moods, costumes, materials, items made to look like clowns - the imaginations of the artists and designers who do like to make clowns - was inspiring. This was similar territory to Ali Baba’s Cave. (See Larry’s February 2016 blog.) We would have liked to take some fun photos but we really weren’t allowed to move the clowns around and put them in the positions or dioramas we were imagining.

It was the best roadside attraction we have visited in a long time and would recommend it without reservation to anyone traveling through Plainview.

Here is a link to the website. I was surprised to find they had one when I looked them up later in the hotel room. But all the better to share this gem with you.

And below I’ve shared photos of us and of a salt and pepper set which will soon be on its way to Plainview, Nebraska.

Mab Nulty