By Betsy Natter
Montgomery County is rich in heritage, culture and art. Check out these fantastic collections right in our own backyard.
The Philip and Muriel Berman Museum of Art
Ursinus College Campus
610 E. Main St., Collegeville, PA 19426
Located on the campus of Ursinus College, this museum includes works from the American 19th and 20th century. The paintings, prints, and sculpture are all utilized to enhance the education of the students on campus as they study and discuss literature, science and political and social history. The Bermans were also avid collectors of contemporary sculpture and as such the grounds exhibit over 80 pieces of art. The grounds are accessible to the public daily during daylight hours. The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday, 11 am to 4 pm.
The Mennonite Heritage Center
565 Yoder Rd., Harleysville, PA 19438
A key feature of German culture throughout Montgomery County is the beautiful art reflected in paintings, quilts and pottery. The Mennonite Heritage Center displays and interprets much of the artistic heritage of our county’s past in its permanent collections, including an extensive display of fraktur. The center also hosts temporary exhibits featuring local artists throughout the year. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday.
Abington Art Center
515 Meetinghouse Rd., Jenkintown, PA 19046
The Art Center features several gallery spaces for its exhibitions which feature emerging as well as established, internationally-recognized contemporary artists. Everything from painting to ceramics, photography and fiber arts can be viewed. The site also maintains an outdoor sculpture park, holds classes and special concert events throughout the year. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Thursday and Saturday mornings.
Art in the Storefront
41 East Butler Ave., Ambler, PA 19002
A unique idea in gallery space, Art in the Storefront is an outdoor gallery that utilizes an old storefront in downtown Ambler as the exhibit space, which by design is accessible 24 hours a day. Local, professional artists are featured throughout the year and exhibit their work for about two months. Updates and open receptions for new installations can be followed on the Facebook page.
1001 Cathedral Road, Bryn Athyn, PA 19009
Glencairn Museum was once the home of industrialist Raymond Pitcairn and his wife Mildred. The historic building now houses an extensive collection of religious and historic art including examples from a wide variety of cultures such as ancient Egyptian, ancient Greek and Roman, medieval Christian, Islamic, Asian, and American Indian. The museum is open for a variety of tours for individuals, school groups and families in addition to special events throughout the year where visitors can view both permanent and rotating collections.
John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove
1201 Pawlings Rd., Audubon, PA 19403
Painter and naturalist John James Audubon gave our nation not only deep insight to the habitats of our wildlife, but also created a vast collection of art for future generations to study and admire. The John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove houses a world class collection of the painter’s art, and also holds lectures, art classes and an annual juried art show. The center is closed during the winter months of early 2018 while construction of the site’s new Visitor Center is ongoing with an expected opening in April of 2019. However, the Center itself will reopen on April 13, 2018 in time for “Drawn From Nature,” this year’s juried art show.
904 Sheble Ln., Ambler, PA 19002
The Three Stooges were a comedy team best known for their slapstick movie shorts, especially in the early to mid-20th century. This unique museum’s mission is to “collect, preserve and interpret historically the culturally significant pieces of Stoogeabilia in order to further the enjoyment and appreciation of the Three Stooges and to maintain the legacy of their comedy for future generations.” The three-story site contains over 100,000 pieces in its collection as well as a research library, a 16MM film storage vault and an 85-seat theater used for film screenings, lectures and special presentations. The museum is open to the public on Thursdays from 10am to 3 pm and other days by appointment only.
American Treasure Tour
One American Treasure Way, Oaks, PA 19456
Enjoy a huge collection of Americana as you ride through this warehouse-sized museum in a tram car. You’ll see vintage cars, Wurlitzer organs, piano, clowns, sideshow art, movie memorabilia, music boxes, dolls and dollhouses, life-sized figures, nutcrackers, and at least one very large shoe! The museum is open for general admission on Thurs, Fri. and Saturdays as well as private events and group tours by appointment. This is truly a unique experience.
Wings of Freedom Aviation Museum
1155 Easton Rd., Horsham, PA 19044
The Harold F. Pitcairn Museum is dedicated to the preservation of historic aircraft of the Delaware Valley region and to educating the public about the nation’s aviation past. The collection includes 17 restored vintage aircraft as well as flight gear, ejection seats, helmets and military service medals. Group tours are welcome by arrangement. The museum is open Wed. through Sunday and is run by a staff of volunteers dedicated to the work of preserving aviation