Thursday, February 01, 2007

Intern Interest Pieces

This semester we have three marketing interns here at the DPM, and they have requested some special assignments to hone their writing skills. Therefore, I have created an interest piece series for them to complete over the course of the semester. The first series will be about their general feelings about the museum as a whole; the second series will be about a specific case or exhibit they have chosen; and the third series will be about a specific object they choose. Their work will be listed on the blog and they will also be available as a podcast. Enjoy!!

Volume 1, Series 1

A few of my favorites…
Hi, I'm Adrienne a junior public relations student at Baylor and currently an intern here at the Dr Pepper Museum.
I remember first moving to Waco almost three years ago. I had friends constantly calling from all over the state asking me to go buy them some of that “good Dr Pepper” from the Dr Pepper museum here in Waco. Being from a big city I didn't know much about Waco or that it is the home of Dr Pepper, much less there was an entire museum dedicated to it here. Request after request I would have to load up my trunk with bottles of Dr Pepper made with pure cane sugar each time I went home. Now that I've had the opportunity to intern here I've gotten to know the museum a lot more in depth rather than just being familiar with the gift shop in the front.

The museum is set up in an old bottling plant, which gives its unique atmosphere. On the second floor you can find answers to many of the questions you’ve always had about Dr Pepper. An example being, the myth concerning whether or not Dr Pepper’s main ingredient is prune juice. (By the way, it’s not.) Although this floor is full of interesting information I would have to say my favorite exhibit has to be down stairs in the back room.
Here the entire room is set up as if it were still part of the bottling plant. Right when you walk in you’re greeted by a Meyer-Dunmore Junior bottle washing machine.

This machine was made to fit a capacity of up to 120 bottles per minute. Here it shows the process of cleaning bottles but it’s said that the plant in Waco used the Meyer-Dunmore bottle Washer which was the “big brother” of the “junior”.
In the corner of the room is a an Artesian water well dedicated to Harry Ellis, the Historian of Dr Pepper Company who helped establish the core of the museums collections. The well served as an actual water source in the bottling plant until the 1920’s when a city ordinance required that it be filled in. It was rediscovered in 1992 during the restoration of the area.

Also on display in this room is soft drink manufacturing equipment used in making some of the earliest Dr Pepper. You can read step by step through the syrup manufacturing process, to the water filtration and purification, to the filling and capping of the bottles and lastly the mixing, labeling and banding of the bottles. You can start at the beginning and see the syrup crocks on display and follow along the process to the motorized stirring devices, to the rocker style carbonator, to the 1898 Crown Cork &Sealer/Filler Capper. The process ends with the 1930’s Dixie Filler/Capper and the 1963 CEM mixer and bottling/labeling machines. It’s interesting to follow the process and see how machines have changed today.

The history in this building is fascinating; something new catches my eye every day. The museum has many interesting exhibits already on display, and as new exhibits continue to make their way to the museum I look forward to what’s in store.

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