Monday, May 24, 2010

Smithsonian Museums - American Indian

Outside the museum.

National Museum of the American Indian

Kathryn and I both had the day off Friday, so we headed to the mall to continue my pledge of visiting every Smithsonian in Washington. (If you didn't know there are two in NYC.)

  • This museum is a relative new comer. It opened in 2004, and I was pretty disappointed that almost all of the museum's materials were created (or recreated) since Will Smith released Willenium.
  • The museum is very modern and the architecture is quite nice, but the museum content didn't really hold our interest. The only exception was the collection of modern art by Native Americans.
  • You know what did hold our interest? The museum's food court! The cafeteria features five areas each with a menu inspired by the dishes of a different Native American population. It's widely believed to be the best lunch on the mall. Also, if the crowds are stressing you out, they serve beer and wine.
  • Kathryn and I both had Indian fry bread topped with buffalo chili, and we split another piece of fry bread topped with honey.
  • My advice for enjoying this museum: check out the sculptures outside, grab a nice lunch, and then head to a different museum

Fry bread desert and fry bread entrée.

Since the museum was such a snoozer, we had a lot of day left to kill. We made a quick lap through the sunny conservatory of the US Botanic Garden.

Rain Forrest exhibit, even better than the Rain Forrest Cafe

I was hoping to take in another Smithsonian, so we headed out for the Postal Museum. When we got inside, we realized we were at the Old Post Office Pavilion. The nice part about DC is that if you get lost you will likely end up at a place run by the national park service. The building has a very tall tower (12 stories!) with some nice views of the city.

The monument commemorates George Washington's presidency, and the wires keep people from jumping.

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