Family Vacations: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum

Music-lovers will enjoy the memorabilia as well as the unique architecture of the I. M. Pei-designed museum.

Rock and roll's most celebrated performers, producers, songwriters, and disc jockeys are honored in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.

It was in Cleveland in 1951 that disc jockey Alan Freed popularized the phrase "rock and roll." It's fitting that the city is home to the dramatic glass-and-steel museum designed by I. M. Pei. The building cantilevers high above Lake Erie, and as you enter its soaring atrium to the music of its various inductees you are immediately taken with the rock-star coolness of the place.

Known as "the house that rock built," the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum offers a range of activities that will appeal to your inner rock star. You can sit for hours, listening to the museum's selection of 500 songs that shaped rock and roll. Or you can watch short film montages that focus on rock's pioneers and early innovators, featuring interviews with artists from the 1960s to the present day.

Memorabilia buffs can linger over Jimi Hendrix's handwritten lyrics, John Lennon's childhood report card, and Tina Turner's memorable concert costumes, plus a variety of other artists' concert posters, ticket stubs, and more. Kids particularly enjoy "The Beat Goes On," an exhibit where they can select a popular rock tune, explore the musical styles that influenced its creators, and then listen to the artists who originated the song.

The exhibits also include a jukebox that plays nearly every song by the inductees, plus films and displays of personal possessions.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum Information

Address: One Key Plaza, 751 Erieside Ave., Cleveland, OH

Telephone: 216/781-ROCK

Hours of Operation:

  • Daily: 10:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
  • Wed.: 10:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.

Admission: Adults, $20; children, $11

To learn more about family vacation destinations, see:

  • Family Vacations: Learn about hundreds of family vacations in destinations all over North America.
  • Ohio State Guide: Learn about Mobil Travel Guide-rated hotels and restaurants in Ohio, as well as other recreational activities.
  • Scenic Drives: For those who think that getting there is half the fun, we have compiled more than 100 of the most scenic drives throughout the country.

Laura Sutherland is a widely acknowledged authority on family travel and has published several books on the topic, including Best Family Ski Vacations In North America and Tropical Family Vacations.