There is a whole cultural side to Lincoln that can easily go unnoticed when you get caught up in the daily grind. Visit one (or all) of these local museums to see fantastic artwork, learn about the history of the state, or improve your knowledge of a niche topic.
Sheldon Art Museum
You probably recognize this monument from campus, but you may never have had the chance to enter. Visit the Sheldon and you will be pleasantly surprised by the many great galleries and remarkable works of art that can be found on your own campus.
Great Plains Art Museum
Located on 11th and Q streets, this museum is full of galleries illustrating the history of the state of Nebraska through magnificent works of art. Whenever you’re looking to get away from your daily grind, travel the short distance to visit the Great Plains Art Museum.
LUX Arts Center
A unique artistic experience that departs from a typical gallery setup, the Lux Center also offers works of art for sale, a variety of art classes exploring all mediums, and many events aimed at showcasing art to all Lincoln residents. Visit their website to see upcoming events and exhibitions.
HISTORY / NATURAL SCIENCES
Nebraska History Museum
The Nebraska History Museum is part of Nebraska’s largest historical society and documents more than 12,000 years of the state’s past. Here you can learn about what it was like to live in Nebraska before it became a state and when it began to colonize, as well as the major events that affected all Nebraskans. This vast collection has over 125,000 items, so there is sure to be something of interest for everyone.
Museum of the Germans in Russia
This museum is dedicated to documenting the history of Germanic settlers within the Russian Empires and their descendants, many of whom now live in the community of Nebraska. The historical society has the largest repository of information on Russian Germans in the Western Hemisphere, so it’s worth a visit even if you don’t descend from that specific heritage.
Almost every student has probably visited Archie the Elephant, but have you ever ventured inside Morrill Hall? This campus museum features an incredible elephant hall, hundreds of fossils, and exhibits about Nebraska’s prehistoric past. There is also a planetarium offering free shows on space and astronomy.
While not technically a museum, the Nebraska State Capitol has a lot to offer for anyone looking for historical insight. Just wandering around this beautiful building can help you uncover information about Nebraska’s unique legislature and art deco architecture. Take a free tour with one of the Capitol Hill guides to learn about the history of the Nebraska government.
International Quilting Museum
This campus-affiliated museum is located on 27th and Holdrege streets and features many artistic and intricate quilts from a wide range of time periods. The whole museum doesn’t take too long to browse, so plan a trip whenever you have free time in your day.
National Roller Skating Museum
You may never have thought about the history of roller skating, but that will change with a visit to this specialist museum. Peruse the many artifacts and exhibits detailing one of America’s favorite historical pastimes. Roller skating has seen another recent surge in popularity, so plan your visit to stay up to date.
Larsen Tractor Test and Energy Museum
Conveniently located on the Eastern Campus, anyone can enjoy a visit to this museum of novelty. Whether you’re a born and raised Midwestern resident or need to brush up on your farming skills, the Tractor Museum is a great place to start. With an outdoor tractor test track, this museum began with the testing of UNL tractors that standardized the performance of agriculture around the world.
Speedway Motors Museum of American Speed
Car enthusiasts and racing fans are sure to have fun at this specialized stop. Travel through this building filled with automotive memorabilia and exhibits to immerse yourself in the vast history of American vehicles, engines, racing, and more.
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