When I travel through Pennsylvania, I always love finding fun and unusual museums. And, without a doubt, one of the most unique is the Big Mac Museum in North Huntingdon, PA.
The Big Mac Museum is located inside a McDonald’s restaurant along Route 30 roughly 20 miles southeast of downtown Pittsburgh.
If you’re anything like me, your first question is probably why the Big Mac Museum is located in western PA. To answer that, we need a little bit of a history lesson.
In 1967, Jim Delligatti, one of the first McDonald’s franchisees, decided to take it upon himself to concoct a new sandwich for the several McDonald’s that he owned in the Pittsburgh area. So, in the back of his store along McKnight Road in the Pittsburgh suburb of Ross Township, he whipped up a new sandwich.
The sandwich went through a few names, including the Aristocrat and the Blue Ribbon Burger, before the name Big Mac was decided upon. And, in 1968, the Big Mac first went on sale in Delligatti’s Uniontown, PA McDonald’s.
Since then, of course, the sandwich has become one of the most well-known and most eaten sandwiches throughout the world.
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Big Mac, the Big Mac Museum was opened inside a McDonald’s in North Huntingdon, PA in 2007. While it’s located approximately 35 miles from where the sandwich was first created and nearly 40 miles from where it was first sold, this location was chosen because of its size and easy access for visitors.
The only real connection this location has to the original Big Mac is that it was owned by Delligatti until his death in 2016.
To be perfectly frank, there is little to the Big Mac Museum. The displays in the “museum” are scattered around a regular (though quite nice) McDonald’s restaurant. There is no visitor center or admission cost, and the museum is open whenever the restaurant is open.
All that being said, the displays here do offer a nice look into the history of this famous sandwich.
The museum’s main display is a giant panel that tells the history of the Big Mac from its creation in 1967 through to recent years. The display points out various milestones and neat pieces of trivia related to the sandwich, often using photos to showcase various points.
In addition to this signage, there are also historical artifacts on display including old (and unused) wrappers for the sandwich, tools that have been used to make it, and signs with interesting trivia about the sandwich.
As someone who is always interested in marketing, I also really enjoyed the old advertising items and fun little Big Mac toys on display.
Probably the most fun display is the giant Big Mac statue next to the nice kid’s play area. At 14 feet high and 12 feet wide, this is said to be the largest Big Mac statue in the world! (Though, I’d also guess it might be the only one.)
Overall, the Big Mac Museum is not really a traditional museum. In fact, it’s really more of a collection of related displays inside a normal McDonald’s. However, if you are passing through the area and are a fan of the Big Mac or simply enjoy visiting oddities around PA, this is a fun spot to check out while traveling the Lincoln Highway through the Laurel Highlands.
Looking for more places to visit nearby? Check out Bushy Run Battlefield, Braddock’s Falls, the Center for PostNatural History, and the best Laurel Highlands breweries.
Hours: Daily: 5a-10p
Currently closed for renovations
Address: 9061 Lincoln Hwy
North Huntingdon, PA 15642
Jim Cheney is the creator of UncoveringPA.com. Based in the state capital of Harrisburg, Jim frequently travels around Pennsylvania and has visited, written about, and photographed all 67 counties in the state. He has also traveled to more than 30 different countries around the world.
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