NASHVILLE, Tenn., August 9, 2012- Minnie Pearl: Centennial Celebration, a spotlight exhibit on one of the most beloved comedic figures of the twentieth century, will be unveiled August 10 at the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum. The exhibit, which celebrates the 100th birthday of Minnie Pearl, the beloved character created by Sarah Ophelia Colley Cannon, is located within the museum's permanent exhibition and will run through August 2013.
Minnie Pearl-the hilarious small-town spinster who wore straw hats (with the price tag attached) and gingham dresses and shared stories from her mythical hometown of Grinder's Switch-made her Grand Ole Opry debut in 1940. Her role on the Opry and numerous network TV appearances helped secure her place as the queen of country comedy. Cannon, the woman behind Minnie, was born October 25, 1912, in Centerville, Tennessee. Known for her philanthropic generosity, she was a breast cancer survivor who lent her name to Nashville's Sarah Cannon Cancer Center and Sarah Cannon Research Center.
Cannon died in 1996 following a series of strokes, but the Minnie Pearl character lives on.
Among the artifacts on display in Minnie Pearl: Centennial Celebration are:
In addition to the year-long exhibit, the museum will host a pair of programs on Saturday, October 27, to commemorate Minnie's birthday. At noon, the museum will offer a special "birthday party" family program, in which youths and their parents are invited to celebrate with Minnie: Cindy Moore, as Minnie Pearl, will host a celebration featuring birthday cake, joke-telling and more. Following the party, the museum will host a panel discussion about memories of Minnie Pearl. Admission to the birthday party is free. The panel discussion is included with museum admission and free to museum members. Visit http://countrymusichalloffame.org/ for complete admission details.
Spotlight exhibits are narratives that supplement themes or aspects of the museum's core exhibition, Sing Me Back Home: A Journey Through Country Music. These short-term, informal displays either provide a closer look at a particular person, group or aspect of country music, or spotlight recently donated items or special anniversaries. Rotated often, spotlight exhibits also offer a glimpse into the museum's unique collection, which includes recorded discs, historical photographs, films and videotapes; thousands of posters, books, songbooks, periodicals and sheet music; personal artifacts such as performers' instruments, costumes and accessories; and more.
Other current spotlight exhibits focus on Bobby Braddock, Jack Greene, Reba McEntire, Jean Shepard and Taylor Swift.
Museum programs are made possible, in part, by grants from the Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission and by an agreement between the Tennessee Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Accredited by the American Association of Museums, the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum is operated by the Country Music Foundation, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) educational organization chartered by the state of Tennessee in 1964. The museum's mission is the preservation of the history of country and related vernacular music rooted in southern culture. With the same educational mission, the foundation also operates CMF Records, the museum's Frist Library and Archive, CMF Press, Historic RCA Studio B and Hatch Show Print®.
More information about the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum is available at www.countrymusichalloffame.org or by calling (615) 416-2001.
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