Ferndale, California: Kinetic Museum (Closed)Collection of foot-pedal-only vehicles used in an annual land and water race.
- On the south side of Shaw Ave., just east of its intersection with Main St. In a back area of the Ferndale Art and Cultural Center.
- April 2013: Reported closed.
Visitor Tips and News About Kinetic Museum
Stan Bennett passed away in September 2011. But the museum is still alive, a collection of kinetic sculptures and associated artifacts from the Kinetic Sculpture Race's earliest days (1969) through the 1990s.[randall frost, 08/12/2012]
The Kinetic Museum is a really cool, wacky place filled with unusual, foot-pedaled vehicles of all shapes and sizes. Your eyes will wander in wonder at the vast reaches of the museum, because everywhere you look there's another strange vehicle!
In the back, motion artist Stan Bennett creates fantastic works that combine physics, architecture, electricity and art. Don't miss this guy when you go to the Kinetic Museum.[Maureen Flanagan, 01/09/2011]
A must-see is the wonderful and well-hidden Kinetic Museum. Tucked in a back room of the Ferndale Art Gallery, the museum may soon be closed due to lack of interest and funding. For right now, however, what a wonderful collection of American ingenuity that has combined form with function in designing foot-pedal-only vehicles capable of going over land, water, sand and mud in an annual grueling 3-day race from Arcata to Ferndale. Vehicles on display resemble everything from a space saucer to a bumble bee; many are made from paper mache.
Behind the museum room, Stan Bennett creates wonderful whimsical moving sculptures on display all over the building. Both are well worth a visit.[Jan Norwood, 07/02/2006]
Jan. 2011: Photo added. Feb. 2009: The Museum is still open, and volunteer clean-up efforts are underway to bring it out of its current state of dustiness.
I grew up on the scenic north coast of CA. There is a town off US 101 between Fotuna and Eureka called Ferndale. The town used to host a "Kinetic Sculpture Race" every year. Usually in conjunction with "Rhododendron days". The entire town was a roadside attraction. It included kitzchy galleries for stained glass interspersed with oddball attractions like a "puppet theater". All in all an eclectic mix for any traveler.[Kenneth Swanson, 11/11/1997]