Be sure to tour the AAM MuseumExpo while you’re attending the Annual Meeting. There you will find 270 exhibitors, showcasing the latest products and services designed to help museums succeed.
The opening ceremony for this year’s MuseumExpo is Monday, May 23 at 12:15 pm and offers live entertainment (the Zydeco Dots!) and refreshments with a first glimpse of what’s new this year.
Library of Congress
A number of exhibitors have special displays just for AAM attendees. Among these is the Library of Congress and its partner, MRA Experiential Tours and Equipment. In booth 236 the Library will debut its new Gateway to Knowledge mobile exhibit, containing facsimiles of some of the library’s – and the nation’s — greatest treasures. The Library will host its own opening ceremony shortly after the official opening of the Expo Hall on Monday, May 23.
The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs is on hand in booth 528, trumpeting its wide range of academic, cultural, professional and sports exchange programs. Among these is the Museums and Community Collaborations Abroad (MCCA) program, which joins museums and communities in cross-cultural projects that go far beyond museum walls. Administered by AAM, the MCCA program will also be featured in a session entitled “Museums and Globalization: Building Successful International Partnerships” on Tuesday, May 24 in Room 332B at 3:45 pm.
And, bring your camera and take your picture with the Houston Loves Museums Art Car which will also be on display in the Expo Hall!
But the tie that binds the MuseumExpo is the interaction between exhibitors and attendees, which sparks new ideas to meet unique needs. Andrew Andoniadis, head of Andoniadis Retail Services in Portland, Oregon, is a long-time exhibitor.
“I believe we have exhibited for 14 years,” Andoniadis said. “Initially we exhibited as a way to generate interest in our museum store consulting programs. Over the years it has also become the warmest and most efficient way for us to stay in touch with our clients, many of whom have become friends. It is not unusual to have prospective and multiple current clients gathered at our booth, talking about retail and other museum issues. It sometimes takes on the atmosphere of an annual family reunion.”
And you can take part in the reunion during the MuseumExpo hours:
Monday, May 23 12:15 – 5 pm
Tuesday, May 24 10 am – 4 pm
Wednesday, May 25 10 am – 2 pm
–Dewey Blanton, American Association of Museums