Waxen stiffs coming to Gatlinburg

For the Mensa members who have seen all the Ripley’s attractions and crave more in Gatlinburg, help is on the way. The Knoxville News Sentinel breathlessly announces that the Hollywood Wax Museum is coming to town.


This wax emporium will have 96 figures, according to the article, yet few of them will be the usual noteworthy ones that adorn such “museums.” Owner/manager Tej Sundher is quoted as saying that the Gatlinburg facility is focusing more on new, contemporary people. What he doesn’t say is that a wax museum focusing on historic figures or anything requiring an education would go broke in Gatlinburg faster than a Barnes & Noble.

My all time favorite wax museum was the Museum of the Hills, which operated years ago in the pseudo Bavarian village of Helen, Georgia. The usual wax suspects–Albert Einstein, Mark Twain, and Gerald Ford (that tells you how long ago it was)–had come from a museum in Underground Atlanta, but were stripped of their names in Helen and posed as anonymous hillbilly figures.

For those visitors in the know, however, the fun was going through the place and picking out the famous people. Mark Twain was the village barber, and his waxen face bore a look of hilarious disgust.

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