getting hitched at city museum | Somewhere in Middle America

A couple of years ago, while I was the youth group director for a local synagogue, I took a group of middle schoolers to St. Louis for a convention. The trip included an evening at City Museum, where they crawled through tunnels, slid down slides and explored enchanted caves. Though it’s called City Museum, it’s more-or-less just a hands-on children’s museum, and I didn’t think I’d have any reason to return to it until I had kids of my own.

So where did J and I find ourselves this past weekend? You guessed it. One of his high school buddies got married in the museum’s Vault room. Though it wouldn’t have been my choice for a wedding venue, it perfectly suited the bride’s and groom’s personality: a bit goofy and bit random. The non-religious ceremony was brief and held in a small room featuring vintage opera posters. The reception space was vast and sparsely decorated. Instead of traditional floral centerpieces, a big bowl of LEGO pieces sat in the center of the tables surrounded by tiny boxes of Nerds candy. Rather than dance to disco tunes, the majority of guests spent their time building LEGO structures. Lunch was served buffet style by an off-site catering company and was actually quite delicious. Oddly, for a wedding, there was no alcohol served besides one glass per guest for toasts. Perhaps this was because it was an early afternoon affair. Or maybe the bride and groom just aren’t big drinkers. Either way, it wasn’t that big of a deal, and I was happy to drink the strawberry lemonade that was offered.

According to J, City Museum looked like it was designed in the 1970s by somebody with an overactive imagination while getting high, although in reality it wasn’t created until 1997 by some internationally acclaimed artist. As guests of the wedding, we received free admission to the museum. Towards the end of the reception, friends of the bride and groom changed into their “play clothes” to explore the space, although J and I didn’t stay. Call me old or boring or stuffy, but I just wasn’t interested in trying to manuever through passageways created for people who haven’t had their growth spurts yet. Instead we did more “grown-up” things, including shopping at Crate and Barrel, a store we don’t have in Omaha.