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Aluminum Christmas Tree & Ornament Museum, Brevard

Also see: Top 50 Holiday Outings | Downtown Brevard | Gingerbread House Competition | Christmas at Biltmore | Christmas Tree Farms | Brevard Music Center | Oskar Blues Brewery | Five House Museums for Holiday Tours
Aluminum Christmas Tree Museum
We had a great visit on December 3, 2014, and took these photos for you!

Aluminum Christmas Tree Museum

Color Wheel Aluminum Christmas Tree

November 29-December 20, 2014
The Aluminum Tree Museum is back, at least part of it! This year, see a sampling (about 1/3 of the total collection) at the Transylvania Heritage Museum at 189 West Main Street in downtown Brevard. The blast from the past will take you back to the 1950s when these trees were all the rage. This is a fun, quirky holiday outing that will make you smile and brighten your day. And it's free to visit (donations appreciated).

The Aluminum Tree & Ornament Museum (ATOM) is the world's only museum dedicated to vintage aluminum Christmas trees. Dozens of trees and vintage ornaments are typcially displayed in whimsical themes, with displays dedicated to the Marilyn Monroe and Elvis, to name a couple. Color wheels turn to provide the light show.

The full name of the museum is: The Aluminum Tree and Aesthethically Challenged Seasonal Ornament Museum & Research Center, established by Stephen Jackson in Brevard. It all started in 1991 when a friend gave Stephen a tattered aluminum tree from a garbage heap. Remembering the silver tree in his childhood home, he threw a party and asked guests to bring the "most aesthetically-challenged" ornaments. Stephen started collecting them and now owns more than 80. His collection has been featured in Southern Living, Money magazine, the New York Times, National Public Radio and BBC. This year's display includes 25 trees.

ATOM is an apt name for this Museum, since the trees were produced during the "atomic age" of the mid-20th century. And Brevard is the perfect location since it's next to Pisgah National Forest, a great protector of trees.

Millions of aluminum Christmas trees were produced by over 40 companies in the the USA, Canada, and Australia from the late 1950s to the early 1970s. You can identify vintage trees by noting that the individual branches insert into holes in the center pole ("trunk"). They "genetically engineer" some trees (the aluminum palm trees, the aluminum bonsai) for fun.

All are invited to their Sneak Peek and Tacky Sweater Party on Friday, November 28, 5-7 PM.

The Transylvania Heritage Museum is 34 miles south of downtown Asheville, and it is open Wednesday-Saturday, 12 Noon until 7 PM (special hours). For more info, call them at 828-884-2347. While you are there, downtown Brevard has many great stores and galleries to explore. The local favorite (and ours) Hobnob restaurant is across the street from the museum. Oskar Blues Brewery is a short drive away.

Street address: 189 North Main Street, Brevard, NC.

Read about more Holiday Outings in Asheville. To take home a live tree, visit one of the Christmas Tree Farms. And see Five House Museums for Holiday Tours.

Watch our video interview with Aluminum Tree Museum Founder Stephen Jackson.
 

Aluminum Christmas Tree Museum
Each tree is themed and named (scientific and common) by museum volunteers

Aluminum Christmas Tree MuseumAluminum Christmas Tree Museum
Left: The Disco Tree. Right: The PhilosoTree

Aluminum Christmas Tree Museum
Aluminum Tree Forest

Buddha TreeAluminum Christmas Tree

Stephen Jackson, Aluminum Trees
Stephen Jackson, Foundater of the Aluminum Tree and Aesthethically Challenged Seasonal Ornament Museum & Research Center

Pat Childress
When you visit, say hello to curator extraordinaire Pat Childress.

Translyvania Heritage Museum

 
Take a tour from the 2013 exhibit.

 

     
     

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RomanticAsheville.com Travel Guide, an insider's vacation planner for Asheville and North Carolina Mountains.
Writing & Photography By Mark File - ©2003-2014 File Investments, Inc - All Rights Reserved
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