I finally went to the Beat Museum on Broadway. This place had a lot of cool pictures and original documents associated with the beat movement. You enter to a little gift shop area where you can walk around the first room before even paying. In the front room they have some typewriters that beat writers and poets wrote on, along with letters that they wrote to each other. After paying you get “access” to the upper floor and a back room. The place isn’t monitored all that carefully. I’m sure you could get up there pretty easily without paying if you really wanted too. In the back room there is a little theater with some couches and old theater seats playing a Jack Kerouac documentary on loop. The museum also has some candy and cans of soda available outside of the room with a sign listing the prices of each item and an unattended bowl to put your money into. Again no one around to keep an eye on it. If you really wanted to you could take a pack of M&M’s, or even take the money from the bowl, and no one would be the wiser. I thought it was really cool how open and trusting the staff were of its visitors.
Upstairs is where most of the museum keeps its artifacts. Along with rare pictures and original artwork by Beat legends, there is a little shelf of books and poetry by Beat authors that you can pick up and read in old comfy chairs and purchase if you wish. As you walk back down the stairs and back into the front gift shop there is a car parked right in the lobby. The car is the same car that was used to film the 2012 movie “On The Road” based off of the influential Kerouac novel. The movie makers only request for keeping it there was that the dust that accumulated from shooting the film never be cleaned off. In the gift shop you can purchase a wider range of beat literature that wasn’t upstairs, posters of hippie and beat icons, vinyl records, and t-shirts.