The much-traveled TV Dinner Club Museum has a new home.
Parts of Fairlawn resident David Blewette’s collection of TV memorabilia is settling into the self-described “retro superstore” the Bomb Shelter on Bank Street in Akron. There will be a “grand reopening” of the museum from 5 to 8 p.m. next Friday to benefit the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank and the Humane Society of Greater Akron; attendees are asked to bring canned food (either the pet or the people kind) or to kick in $2.
Central to the Blewette display are dozens of television sets dating back to the 1940s. People spoiled by big screens and HD should marvel at the tiny, rabbit-eared sets, or the ones meant to resemble other furniture, such as a dresser-like cabinet holding not only a pop-up TV screen but a radio and record turntable. Names like Admiral, Crosley and Sentinel will echo with many visitors.
At the party, named “How Sweet Was It?,” Blewette expects to be showing TV-themed lunchboxes as well as a variety of international miniature TV models, some of which served as gumball dispensers or salt-and-pepper shakers.
He also plans to have some classic video showing, including a never-seen interview with the late Del Donahoo, and a DJ playing TV-related music — theme songs and tunes by the likes of George “Goober Pyle” Lindsey and Leonard Nimoy.
After the party, the museum’s goodies can be seen for free during the Bomb Shelter’s regular hours, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday. Although the store specializes in the sale of vintage goods, Blewette’s items are for display only.
It’s a smaller setup than the museum had about 10 years ago during a six-month stay on Main Street in downtown Akron. But the new, permanent setting will have items rotating in and out over time, Blewette said.
Blewette, who also runs the Grandmother’s Video production company, has been showing off parts of his collection for more than 20 years. His items have been on view at the Cuyahoga County Fair, Cleveland’s Baseball Heritage Museum, the Akron Art Museum, the Smithsonian Institution and other venues.
By the way, regardless of the museum’s title, it does not include TV dinners. The name dates to when museum plans included a TV-themed restaurant — and Blewette said he could never come up with a better title.
Bible challengers. American Bible Challenge begins a new season on May 22 on GSN with a lot of Buckeye content. Three of the 18 teams are from Ohio — Hilliard, Otway and Akron.
The Akron team, dubbed Devoted Divas for Christ, consists of Patrice Smith, Gloria Williams and Randi Bibbs, all from City of Joy Life Enrichment Center. They auditioned for the show in Cleveland — and played to raise money for the center’s Unity in the Community program, which Williams said “has the mission to raise awareness and the prevention of gun violence against youth.”
Hosted by Jeff Foxworthy (with Kirk Franklin as co-host), the series is a tournament-style quiz where the 18 teams compete in groups of three on the first six shows. The six winners advance to the semifinals, which lead to a final round.
According to GSN, categories include “Christ or Klingon” “in which contestants have to guess whether words are from the Bible or Star Trek’s Klingon language; ‘Curse You Autocorrect’ where contestants must decipher a typed Bible passage that has been ‘autocorrected;’ and ‘Nazareth Enquirer’ with sensational Biblical headlines that could have appeared in a tabloid.”
In an email to the Beacon Journal’s Colette Jenkins, Williams did not give away how the team did, except that they “represented (Akron) very well.”
Heaven-ly box office. Entertainment publication the Hollywood Reporter says Heaven Is for Real, co-starring Macedonia’s Connor Corum, is off to a strong start.
It took in a reported $3.7 million when it opened nationwide Wednesday, the top take for that day, just ahead of the blockbuster Captain America: The Winter Soldier, part of which was shot in Cleveland. According to Hollywood Reporter, it now looks as if Heaven Is for Real “could gross north of $20 million by Easter Sunday, one of the top openings ever for a faith-based title.”
It’s based on the bestselling book of the same name by Todd Burpo, played by Greg Kinnear in the movie. Connor plays Burpo’s young son Colton, who after a near-death experience began describing what he saw in heaven.
Movie music. You may have heard of the Cleveland Orchestra’s planned live performance of the Bernard Herrmann score to the Alfred Hitchcock Psycho on Tuesday, along with the movie. As a tie-in, the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque will present six movies with music by Herrmann from Thursday through April 27.
The series ranges chronologically from 1941’s Citizen Kane and The Devil and Daniel Webster though 1976’s Obsession. Herrmann, who died in 1975, composed music for movies and television, more than once in collaboration with Hitchcock, whose Marnie is also in the Cinematheque program. The rest of the series consists of On Dangerous Ground and The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad. Consult www.cia.edu/cinematheque for showtimes and ticket info.
Rich Heldenfels writes about popular culture for the Beacon Journal and Ohio.com, including the HeldenFiles Online blog, www.ohio.com/blogs/heldenfiles. He is also on Facebook and Twitter. You can contact him at 330-996-3582 or email@example.com.