Alcatraz East Crime Museum In Pigeon Forge Set For Grand Opening In December

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Alcatraz East, a new crime museum, announces their grand opening in East Tennessee on December 16, 2016. The museum, which will give visitors the behind-the-scenes story to the nation’s crime history will be a must-see for all ages. Crime and investigation has always been a popular topic; from books, to television shows, and movies, people are intrigued with how crime happens and cases are solved. Now, these enthusiasts are in luck, with our nation’s history of crime, justice and the law enforcement coming together at Alcatraz East.

“Guests are fascinated with this museum, its artifacts and the stories we tell, I always say this is America’s favorite subject,” said Janine Vaccarello, chief operating officer of Alcatraz East, “Whether it’s a trial you followed, a CSI show you’ve seen, or grew-up wanting to be a cop, we have something of interest for everyone. And we look forward to being part of this community!”

The new crime museum is located at the entrance to The Island, featuring Margaritaville Hotel and Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen, at 2757 Parkway in Pigeon Forge, and is adjacent to Stages West and The Comedy Barn. The exterior façade, a 19th century prison, was inspired by the historic Alcatraz Penitentiary in San Francisco. Within the 25,000 square feet, two-story museum, there are over 100 interactive exhibits that can be enjoyed by all ages. The self-guided tour covers the history of American crime, the consequences of crime, crime scene investigation, crime fighting, and pop culture.

“I’m looking forward to having Alcatraz East as my new neighbor! I’m fascinated with forensic science,” said Paula Deen, of Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen. “After spending time at the museum, people can stop in for a good meal. Together we make a great family friendly combination for spending a day at The Island in Pigeon Forge.”

Some of the highlights of the many crime related artifacts on display include John Dillinger’s death mask, Al Capone’s rosary, a Bonnie & Clyde collection, the Bronco from the OJ chase, an FBI polygraph machine, Al Pacino’s submachine gun from the movie Scarface, items related to the 2012 Benghazi attack, and the latest in law enforcement technology. The interactive features of the museum will include a CSI lab, a simulated shooting range, safe cracking, digital fingerprinting, and DUI safety training.  The museum’s mission is to provide guests of all ages with a memorable journey into the history of American crime and its consequences through a captivating, interactive and educational experience.

“Crime is part of history, and oftentimes crimes lead to laws and then those laws create change. The good news is learning about it often leads to crime prevention,” states Vaccarello, “Whether you want to try out your CSI skills or look at Ted Bundy’s infamous VW Bug, we definitely have something of interest for everyone at Alcatraz East Crime Museum.”

The museum is something that its owner, John Morgan, had always envisioned. No stranger to running successful attractions, he also owns WonderWorks located a mile away from Alcatraz East.  The museum also has a star-studded board of advisors who help contribute to its mission of education.  The experts range from historians to law enforcement. The board includes a Navy Seal, warden, medical examiner, law enforcement and, notably, Judge Belvin Perry, best known for presiding over Casey Anthony trial.

"Last year we experienced record high visitors to our area," said David Wear, Mayor of Pigeon Forge, "We know that this attraction will enhance our visitors’ family entertainment while staying with us."

General admission tickets are $14.95 for children, $24.95 for adults. Group ticket sales are available. The museum will be open 365 days a year, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., with the last ticket sold 60 minutes before closing. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.alcatrazeast.com.


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