Super hero museum closes

January 8, 2008
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Superman leaps tall buildings in a single bound (note: If he can fly, why does he bother leaping? Just asking).

Dane Nash took his own enormous leap—of faith—when he decided to put his Superman and Batman memorabilia collection—including a full-sized Batmobile and Batboat—in a downtown storefront and called it the American Super Heroes Museum.

Alas, Nash announces on the Museum’s voicemail that its doors are “closed forever.” (The website is still up, though, at www.heroesmuseum.com.)

Reasons aren’t given, but a Monopoly-playing level of business knowledge should be enough to point to a tricky location, downtown rent, and a limited-appeal collection as contributing factors. Or maybe there’s something else.

Whatever the case, I had hopes that the eccentric American Super Heroes would, if not soar, at least be around when the next Batman movie opened.

Heck, Dr. Ted’s Musical Marvels, a museum of mechanical instruments, is still open in southern Indiana (need proof, visit www.drteds.com). The Museum of Miniature Houses is still housed in Carmel (see www.museumofminiatures.org).

Surely Nash’s collection shouldn’t be hidden in a bat cave or fortress of solitude somewhere.

Your thoughts?
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  • I put it down to a lack of publicity. I remember the news about it opening last Spring, thinking it sounded pretty cool, and then it dropped off the radar and I forgot about it until today. Seems like at least a billboard or two would have been in order. Flyers around town. Ads in popular national comics- or movie-related publications. Even if the fellow took a loss on an initial media blitz, it might have been enough to start a steady stream of people going into the place, and maybe even coming in from other areas.

    You're right; there's gotta be interest in this. There's a fellow in Logansport who makes a very comfortable living just making replica '60s-era Batmobiles. I just don't think enough people knew about the museum. Sad.

    (And actually, Superman couldn't fly in the early years. He just jumped a loooong way. Not sure exactly when he started flying outright, but in the beautiful 1940s Max Fleischer cartoons, he's definitely just jumping.)
  • The miniatures museum in Carmel is a fascinating place. A friend dragged me to it, and I fell in love.

    I noticed that the miniature museum uses a lot of volunteers. Maybe the Superman Museum guy was trying to...well, be Superman, and run the place by himself. Maybe he decided he needed some private time with Lois Lane or something. Maybe he just burned out.
  • Sorry I missed it. Don't get to Indy often. I think it was a matter of wrong place, wrong theme. It took years for the Superman Musuem in Metropolis, Illinois to make it. It started as a collection in a drug store. Now it is in its own building and there is also a Hollywood Museum in town. I started a small museum on Hollywood Hoosiers. I thought of having it in Indy but I would be a small fish in a big pond. I opened it in Vincennes, IN, home of Red Skelton. I have limited hours and still work a real job to pay for it. I believe in time it will grow. I think the James Dean gallery took time also. I wish Nash would give it time.
  • I visited the Heroes Museum off the alley by the defunct Union Station -- took about 10 minutes to go through what seemed to be a trinket collection of limited appeal. My girlfriend's 9 and 11 year-olds were yawning throughout the experience. If I remember right, this 10 minute excursion set me back about $30. Not exactly a good return on investment even for an understanding patron of the local arts. Probably would have been more fun to take a tour of the lofts in the same building for free.
  • I'm terribly disappointed this closed. This was a great, unique experience different than anything else in town. I had taken my two sons (ages 3 and 5) three times and they loved it. I was planning fourth visit this weekend when I found out it had closed. The museum was not a bad investment for a family either since admission was only $5 and kids (i think under 12) were free.

    I hope Dane Nash displays his collection again.

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