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Halls of fame

See the best of the best on a tour of the nation's museums of fame


 

 

rom baseball to pinball, practically every sport,

pastime and interest has a museum dedicated to

celebrating great accomplishments in that field. But which halls are really worth a visit? We asked some welltraveled families to nominate the ones that are the most educational, inspirational and just plain fun. Here are their picks for the Hall of Fame hall of fame.

SCIENCE FICTION MUSEUM AND HALL OF FAME, SEATTLE

Exhibits devoted to spacecraft, robots, aliens and life in the future will launch your crew past the limits of time and space. $12-$15; (877) 454-7836; sfhomeworld.org

NATIONAL TOY HALL OF FAME, ROCHESTER, N.Y.

Classic toys are immortalized in a hall at the Strong National Museum of Play; visit a pretend supermarket and other play areas. $7-$9; (585) 263-2700; museum ofplay.org

PINBALL HALL OF FAME, LAS VEGAS

COURTESY OF PINBALLMUSEUM.ORG

COURTESY OF PINBALLMUSEUM.ORG

Test your flipper skills on hundreds of playable machines and arcade games dating from the 1950s to the present. Free (the games cost 25 cents to $2); pinballmuseum.org

SURFER’S HALL OF FAME AND SURFING WALK OF FAME, HUNTINGTON BEACH, CALIF.

These sidewalk tributes to surf heroes are two blocks from the International Surfing Museum, a treasure trove of vintage boards and memorabilia. $2; (714) 960-3483; surfing museum.org

THE AUTOMOTIVE HALL OF FAME, DEARBORN, MICH.

Check out exhibits on industry innovators, a mural of auto history and a full-size replica of the first gas-powered car. $3-$6; (313) 240-4000; automotivehalloffame.org

INTERNATIONAL BOWLING MUSEUM AND HALL OF FAME, ST. LOUIS

COURTESY OF NMSPACEMUSEUM.ORG

COURTESY OF NMSPACEMUSEUM.ORG

Did you know that bowling has been around for more than 5,000 years? Fun hands-on exhibits let you roll through this long history. $6-$7.50; (314) 231-6340; bowlingmuseum.com

THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE HALL OF FAME,

ALAMOGORDO, N.M.

Meet heroes of space travel, and marvel at meteors, replica spaceships and images from the Hubble Space Telescope. $2.50-$3; (877) 333-6589; nmspacemuseum.org

ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME AND MUSEUM, CLEVELAND

See Janis Joplin’s Porsche and John Lennon’s report card, and sample music through headphones and filmed concerts. The building’s cool design rocks, too. $11-$20; (888) 764- ROCK; rockhall.com

PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME, CANTON, OHIO

Mementos from star players, hourly NFLaction films and interactive “call the play” and trivia games score big with gridiron fans. $10-$16; (330) 456-8207; profootball hof.com

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HALL OF FAME, KNOXVILLE, TENN.

Atop the hall is the world’s largest basketball (10 tons!); inside, find get-into-the-action exhibits and courts for playing some hoops. $6-$8; (865) 633-9000; wbhof.com

THE NATIONAL BASEBALL HALL OF FAME & MUSEUM, COOPERSTOWN, N.Y.

Catch a new exhibit of baseball art and a tribute to members of the 3,000-Hit Club, as well as the gallery of baseball greats. $5-$14.50; (888) 425-5633; baseball halloffame.org

BASKETBALL HALL OF FAME, SPRINGFIELD, MASS.

Stand in the (very large) footprints of famous hoopsters, play sports announcer and measure your vertical leap. $12-$17; (877) 4-HOOPLA; hoophall.com

– FamilyFun magazine

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