This Belongs in a Museum

Once called the "Stephen Fry of Museum Blogging," this tumblog, written by a frustrated museologist, is dedicated to the small, random museums and weird attractions of the world. Always informative, usually funny, sometimes offensive.

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Today I learned there is a small kingdom called Boomeria outside of Santa Cruz, California. Yes, you read that last sentence correctly. The King, also known as Mr. Preston Boomer, has been teaching physics and chemistry at San Lorenzo Valley High School for over fifty years when he’s not busy sitting on his throne. It all started in the 1950s in the yard of his house, far away in the forest. Students (or should I say serfs) helped construct a wooden castle with a dungeon, turrets, cannons and underground catacombs. They also repaired an 1879 pipe organ with 2,500 pipes in a newly built chapel, which is so impressive people come from all over to hear its music. His students, known as the “Brotherhood of the Natural Philosophers” (um…what about the ladies?), have learned all about science through this magical world of music, history and war while hanging out next to a swimming pool called the “Main Aqueous Ammunition Bunker”. Something tells me I would’ve enjoyed this dude as a teacher more than the one I had in high school. Every single day she would share with us her favorite fungus or bacteria. Exciting shit. Anyway, back to the castle. While the students dug the tunnels for the dungeon, they found bones of an animal that resembles a dinosaur so the reconstructed skeleton now hangs in the command center. More science lessons are to found in the main engine room, where the water to the cannons is controlled, as well as the control room, which holds an elaborate telegraph system used for communication and steam power engines. Because let’s not forget…not just anyone is allowed in the kingdom. The entire property is wired with horns, sirens and bells. The loudest is called the Weapon Beulah, a Navy foghorn that can be heard from miles away. And of course what science classroom would this be without a laboratory, this one happens to be full of ancient chemicals and experiments.  While Boomeria is a man’s castle (and private home), King Boom opens it up to the public every year for Christmas Carols, the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival, known as Boomeria Extravaganza, and occasionally to private groups. A few years ago some Google employees got to hang out in Boomtown’s secret passages, and play with the toys and shit. Because they have such a difficult life, those Google princes. Whatevs. 

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