Students can dive into Mississippi’s creative legacy at The Mississippi Arts + Entertainment Experience (The MAX) in Meridian, Mississippi. The MAX celebrates the big artists and legends that call Mississippi home, and students can explore the creative processes behind each of the artist’s work through interactive exhibits.

“Art is a universal language and this museum covers an expansive list of art forms and mediums,” said Paula Chance, director of marketing at The MAX. “Students who come to The MAX will be exposed to art forms they would never have experienced. Perhaps they will find the inspiration to become the future Hall of Fame inductees. Most visitors enjoy the ‘Juke Joint’ exhibit, where they can compose their own band with Mississippi music artists who wouldn’t ever have played on the same stage at the same time.”

Community Gallery at The MAX in Meridian, Mississippi
Community Gallery, The MAX, Meridian, Miss.
Credit: The MAX

In the Hall of Fame, students can experience the impact Mississippians have on the arts and entertainment world in a 360-degree exhibit. The Hall of Fame is The MAX’s centerpiece; it stands two stories tall in the rotunda. 

Some legends in the Hall of Fame include: Elvis Presley, B.B. King, Oprah Winfrey, Jimmy Buffett, Willie Morris, William Faulkner, George Ohr, Muddy Waters and Jimmie Rodgers.

“Of course, the exhibits alone are more than enough for school groups to sink their teeth into, but there are some other programs to help school groups engage deeper in the exhibits,” Chance said. “For example, student groups can enjoy scavenger hunts, Make + Take Workshops and special in-school curricula. Scavenger hunts help groups find interesting facts about the artists in The MAX that they might have overlooked otherwise. Make + Take Workshops allow the student groups to have hands-on experiences that explore the different art forms represented in The MAX.”

Hall of Fame rotunda at The MAX in Meridian, Mississippi
Hall of Fame rotunda, The MAX, Meridian, Miss.
Credit: The MAX

The MAX’s Walk of Fame begins at the Mississippi State University Riley Center and ends at The MAX’s entrance, with famous names like Walter Anderson, Morgan Freeman, Marty Stuart, John Grisham and Sela Ward leading the path. 

Chance suggests booking groups at least two weeks in advance.

For more information, call 601-581-1550 or visit msarts.org.

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The more wine columnist Kelsey Smith travels, the more tales she can’t wait to tell. She especially likes to discover how destinations and attractions can accommodate groups. To earn a star on her travel checklist, there better be parking for a motorcoach and dining, at least nearby. Watch for the debut of her blog, “Wine Wednesday.”