While the weather outside was frightful, the museums participating in an online snowball fight made the 2018 Bomb Cyclone so delightful.
We got an email early in the morning from Claire Lanier, the Social Media and Content Manager at the New York Historical Society, inviting us to join in on a #museumsnowballfight NYHS was starting with the Museum of the City of New York on Twitter.
(We’re thinking the visibility up Broadway from 34th St. is abt the same today as in 1899! 🤣) pic.twitter.com/vZ47TQb30V
— MuseumoftheCityofNY (@MuseumofCityNY) January 4, 2018
Challenge accepted—incoming! Visibility was a little tough during the 1888 blizzard, too…but on the upside, snow-fort-making was at an all-time high. #museumsnowballfight #bombcyclone pic.twitter.com/lQneQSSwZ5
— N-YHistoricalSociety (@NYHistory) January 4, 2018
An online snowball fight between museums to show off their snow-related collections? Yeah – we were so in.
The beginning of the exchange goes beyond the Bomb Cyclone. Claire shared with us the inspiration behind the #museumsnowballfight:
“One day I noticed that the Museum of the City of New York (often perceived as the New York History Society’s rival), posted something on Instagram that we were just about to post. My initial reaction was ‘Darn, they got there first.’ But it occurred to me that my content could supplement theirs, and vice versa — we can be actively collaborative instead of competitive. I called Meredith and she agreed! So we started #HistoryHighFive — we choose a topic together in advance and both post about it, saying “Get more of the story from our friends at…” so our followers can learn more from more sources.”
The idea for a museum snowball fight in particular was inspired by a friendly exchange of winter photographs on a snowy day in February 2017 between a former Social Media Manager at the Museum of the City of New York and the neighboring New York Public Library.
“I thought it would be fun to do a reboot and get more museums involved. Luckily for us, people wanted to play!” – Meredith Duncan, Social Media Manager for the Museum of the City of New York
“#museumsnowballfight was born of the same collaboration — Meredith called me this morning and said, ‘Wanna have a snowball fight?’ And we worked together to reach out to other museums. We have found this collaborative process to build a richer digital community and it’s just straight up more fun!”
We couldn’t agree more! Watching the #museumsnowballfight play out on Twitter was a highlight of our Bomb Cyclone experience.
Here are some of our favorite tweets from the day:
— Royal BC Museum (@RoyalBCMuseum) January 5, 2018
— Mingei Museum (@MingeiMuseum) January 5, 2018
After World War II, many survivors of the Holocaust found themselves in Displaced Persons camps trying to rebuild their lives. For these kids in the Ulm DP camp in Germany, snow was a welcome distraction. #museumsnowballfight pic.twitter.com/kDSavwx4nb
— US Holocaust Museum (@HolocaustMuseum) January 5, 2018
Ok @CondeLibrary, this cover monkey offers a KO of cuteness–the @NatGeoMag cover story from Dec 1994 explains that that juvenile macaques like to make snowballs and carry them around (but don’t actually throw them) #museumsnowballfight #librarytreasures #archives #macaque #Japan pic.twitter.com/gp3VyVP0w6
— NatGeoLib+Archives (@NatGeoLibrary) January 5, 2018
— Museum at FIT (@museumatFIT) January 5, 2018
— JMU SpeCollections (@JMUSpeColl) January 5, 2018
— Philly Magic Gardens (@magicgardens) January 6, 2018
— Museum of Fine Arts (@mfaboston) January 5, 2018
Some took it quite literally stepping outside for an IRL snowball fight;
— The Drawing Center (@drawingcenter) January 4, 2018
Want more Museum Twitter?