Yogi Berra Museum & Learning Center
8 Yogi Berra Drive
Little Falls, NJ 07424
Open: Sunday 12:00pm-5:00pm/Monday & Tuesday Closed/Wednesday-Saturday 12:00pm-5:00pm
Fee: Adults $10.00/Children under 18 $5.00/Veterans and Montclair State College students free
My review on TripAdvisor:
I went to the Yogi Berra Museum for the first time and I really enjoyed myself not just as a Yankee fan but learning the life behind the man. I did not know very much about Yogi Berra and his life but it is an interesting look at someone’s life and how his sport molded him to be the player and the family man he was in life.
I never realized he was born in St. Louis and how his life in baseball came about. The museum takes Yogi Berra’s life from the time he was born and his family life growing up to how he became a ball player to his life in the minors and then to his life as a Yankee. He really was the ultimate leader and Yankee at the golden years of the team when they won five consecutive championships.
The case lines at the Museum
The museum also covered his post player life and his time coaching the Mets and winning other championships. It was also interesting to see how his family life shape him. He had been married over 60 years to his wife and had three boys and eleven grandchildren and how close he was with his family. I also liked his interaction with the new players and mentoring young players. The best pictures that stood out was his photo with Derek Jeter and the second was the group photo of the three perfect game pitchers and catchers with Yogi Berra and Don Larsen in the middle of the photo. That captured the true spirit of the Yankees.
Memorabilia at the Museum
What was fun to see is all the World Series Rings that he won on display. It was a tribute to such a storied career and life. The Yogism’s that he was quoted as saying as “It ain’t over till its over” told of his character and his spirit in life.
The one thing that stood out in the museum was that it was the story of a man who had a life well lived and had the balance of family, career and friends along the way that showed how even from humble beginnings you can achieve great things. He even got the Medal of Freedom after his death in 2015 which showed the affect he had on people. For any true Yankee fan, I highly recommend a visit to the museum, not just for the pictures and stores and baseball memorabilia but to see a person who was his own man in life.
Hats off to Yogi Berra that the town of Montclair would honor one of its citizens in such a way. It is really was a great museum.
The Yogi Berra Museum at dusk
History of the Museum: (Wiki)
The Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center is a museum on the main campus of Montclair State University in Little Falls, NJ. It serves to honor the career of Yogi Berra, who played for the New York Yankees of Major League Baseball and was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. The museum which contains artifacts from Berra’s career, opened on December 4th, 1998. It is adjacent to Yogi Berra Stadium.
“The Friends of Yogi Inc”, a nonprofit organization, raised two million through donations to build the museum to honor Yogi Berra, who played his entire Major League Baseball career for the New York Yankees. John McMullen, the owner of the New Jersey Devils of the National Hockey League was among the museum’s benefactors. The museum was built adjacent to Yogi Berra Stadium, which hosts the New Jersey Jackals, a Minor League Baseball team in the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball and the Montclair State Red Hawks baseball team.
The museum was dedicated in October 1998, with fellow Baseball Hall of Famers Ted Williams and Larry Doby in attendance. It opened to the public on December 4th. In 2010, IKON 5 Architects redesigned the museum and Brian Hanlon sculpted a statue of Berra to go in front of the museum.
Berra had feuded with Yankees owner, George Steinbrenner since Steinbrenner fired him 16 games into the 1985 season. Berra refused to be involved in Yankees events, including Yankee games. In January 1999, Berra and Steinbrenner resolved their feud with a public event at the Yogi Berra Museum.
Berra frequented visited the museum for signings, discussions and other events. It was his intention to teach children important values such as sportsmanship and dedication, both on and off the baseball diamond.
On October 8th, 2014, a burglary occurred at the museum, in which a team of “professional” thieves stole specific pieces of Berra’s memorabilia.
The museum contains items from Berra’s career, including baseball cards, a jacket worn by Berra while throwing out the first pitch of Game 1 of the 2009 World Series, two of his MLB MVP awards and all ten World Series rings he received as a player. Following the resolution of Berra’s feud with Steinbrenner, the Yankee loaned the Commissioner’s Trophy from the 1998 World Series to the museum.
In 2013, the museum teamed up with Athlete Ally to develop an exhibit called “Championing Respect”. which aims to support the inclusion of LGBT athletes in sports. An exhibit in 2014 celebrated the 75th Anniversary of Lou Gehrig’s farewell speech.
The museum offers a wide range of school and public programs on all aspects of sports and society. It conducts guided school tours and education programs, provides off-site assemblies on anti-bullying and sportsmanship and also collaborates with Montclair State University on programs examining topical issues in media and sports.
In promoting the values of respect and sportsmanship, the Museum in partnership with Investors Bank and the Super Essex Conference, developed a Best Teammate Award program in 2013, recognizing outstanding leadership by student-athletes. The museum also offers an array of summer camps, including youth baseball and softball camps.
(This information comes from Wiki)