Its official name is the Antique Automobile Club of America Museum, but it’s almost always called the AACA Museum or the Hershey Auto Museum.
By any name, the museum in Pennsylvania is among the country’s most active facilities honoring the history of automobiles — and it’s reopened.
Jeffrey Bliemeister, the museum’s Executive Director, is our guest on this week’s episode of The Weekly Driver Podcast.
Co-hosts Bruce Aldrich and James Raia discuss with Bliemeister the status of auto museums around the country during the coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, we talk about the AACA Museum and its approach to presenting the ever-fascinating world of vintage vehicles.
The museum’s vast digital experiences — tours, ride-alongs and collection chronicles — are all highlighted on the AACM website and YouTube channel. In-person visits began again on January 4.
(A storm in the area temporarily stopped in-person visits again, but the museum has re-opened.)
One compelling vehicle on display is a 1933 LaSalle. The artwork on wheels, sometimes known as the Cadillac Companion, was manufactured from 1927-1940. It was slotted between the Buick and Cadillac lineups, and like Cadillac, was named the Frenchmen who explored America in the 17th and 18th centuries.
The museum’s LaSalle is a two-door convertible coupe with a rumble seat. It has most of the features of the Cadillac line, including the 115 horsepower V8 engine. The trim and detail distinctions and an approximate $500 price difference set the two lines apart.
Restored in the late 1970s, the car was shown then placed in long-term storage. It was donated to the Museum in 2017 by Walter Van Nuys of Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania.
A new exhibit showcases the world of “Hemis.”
As the website explains:
“Most people associate the word “Hemi” with Mopar/Chrysler vehicles; however, there are many more vehicles that have a “Hemi” engine that might surprise you!
“The term “Hemi” refers to hemispherical combustion chambers – learn more about these robust engines and the vehicles they power.”
Please join us for a lively discussion about all things auto museums.
The AACA Museum, Inc., is located at 161 Museum Drive, Hershey, Pa. Tel. (717) 566-7100. Visit its website: AACA Museum.
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Article Last Updated: February 2, 2021.
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A sports, travel and business journalist for more than 45 years, James has written the new car review column The Weekly Driver since 2004.
In addition to this site, James writes a Sunday automotive column for The San Jose Mercury and East Bay Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., and a monthly auto review column for Gulfshore Business, a magazine in Southwest Florida.
An author and contributor to many newspapers, magazines and online publications, James has co-hosted The Weekly Driver Podcast since 2017.