Visit the Grammy Museum in Cleveland
By Andrea Moreau
Mississippi has so many wonderful places to visit. If you travel often, you’re sure to find a few of those hidden surprises. One such place, nestled deep in the heart of the Delta, is the delightful town of Cleveland.
You might not know that in 2013, Cleveland was voted one of the “Top Twenty Small Towns to Visit” by Smithsonian Magazine. No doubt, some of the many reasons for that honor and distinction are the historical museums, art galleries and museums, restaurants, and music venues that speckle the small, charming town.
One museum alone is worthy of a visit to Cleveland: The Grammy Museum Mississippi.
This relatively new Delta attraction is one of the only two Grammy Museums located in the United States — the other is the original Grammy Museum in Los Angeles. The 27,000-square-foot Grammy Museum Mississippi opened its doors in 2016 and is housed on the campus of Delta State University, home of the Delta Music Institute, which is Mississippi’s sole accredited music industry studies program.
The museum is a fantastic opportunity for you and your family to learn so much about the history of music in Mississippi, the celebrated singers, songwriters, and musicians from our state, and experience the red carpet excitement of that famous awards show held once every year.
You may be thinking, “Why would a Grammy Museum be located in the Mississippi Delta?” Good question, and it’s one that’s answered almost immediately by a cheerful museum guide as you begin your tour.
Here are a few reasons:
- Musicians from Mississippi, particularly the Delta area, had a great influence on early American music.
- Mississippi has more Grammy winners per capita than any other state.
- Almost eight percent of all Grammy Lifetime Achievement Awards were given to Mississippians (Elvis Presley, B.B. King, Charley Pride, Jerry Lee Lewis, Jimmie Rodgers, Sam Cooke and Leontyne Price)
The Grammy Museum Mississippi was designed and developed in consideration of music lovers of any age. Inside, children can engage with interactive exhibits, including the mini-surround-sound theater used to view previous Grammy telecasts; dance lessons with Ne-Yo, which feature a look back at different dances and dance styles through the years; and the Singing & Songwriting Producing Pod, which enable anyone to record and produce his or her own blues track.
Visitors of all ages might also enjoy seeing costumes and gowns worn by various Grammy winners and presenters. The musicians in your family will especially appreciate the numerous and varied instruments used in performances by so many Grammy winning musicians, such as Bruno Mars.
A visit to Cleveland and the museum will be a fun and powerful educational experience for your children! If you’re a homeschooler or a teacher, the museum’s website even has curriculum materials aligned with state content standards.
The Grammy Museum Mississippi is open seven days a week. Adult tickets cost $12; youth tickets for ages 6-18 cost $6; and children five years and younger are admitted free. The museum also hosts school and class field trips. For more information, visit Grammymuseumms.org or call (662)441-0100.
Andrea Moreau lives in Pass Christian with her husband and three children. She is an educator and author of the children’s book, “I Mustache You to Read with Me.”