The Museum Club

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The Museum Club

If you live in Flagstaff or are a student at N.A.U., there’s no need to introduce you to the Zoo. However, if you’re a newbie or just skimming this blog site, let me tell you about one of Flag’s most iconic bars.

When taxidermist Dean Eldredge built his museum in 1931 it was actually considered east of town. The city limits surpass it now by a few miles, but back then it sat off by itself on Route 66. Someone dubbed the place “the biggest log cabin in the world” and travellers on the Mother Road immediately noticed the building’s unique, tree-trunked doorway. Inside, the walls were crowded with the mounted heads and torsos of animals that Eldredge had preserved. Sadly, Eldridge passed away in 1936 and the building was bought by Doc Williams who turned it into a nightclub.

While the venue endured during the 40s and 50s, the Club’s popularity exploded when Don Scott bought it in the 1960s. Scott had been a country-western musician himself and he still had connections to that world. Many of his old bandmates and buddies were happy to stop by the Zoo when passing through town and play a few sets. All the country favorites, from Willie Nelson to Barbara Mandrell, have played the Museum Club. Don and his wife Thorna knew how to throw a party and run a successful business. The bar still has a large dance floor where fans can swing and stomp along when the music moves them.

Anyone who’s lived here for a few years has heard the eerie stories about the Zoo’s ghosts. It’s a paranormal hot spot, possibly due to the Scotts’ tragic demise inside their beloved club. There’s more otherworldly phenomena captured here than anywhere else in Flagstaff, save the downtown area. The whole building emits a wildly exciting energy, especially on nights when the music’s live and the crowd is swinging. The current owners maintain a website where ghost hunters can post photos and write accounts of any freaky phenomena. Check it out for what they’ve got going this year.