Mississippi’s tiniest museum never closes, requires no tickets and offers enormous experiences for all ages

Published 11:54 am Friday, October 22, 2021

One of Mississippi’s fastest-growing attractions — and arguably one of the most minuscule — has two new interactive exhibits.

Guests to the Pocket Alley, a re-imagined downtown alley, can now view a miniature art gallery and movie theater, in addition to the alley’s already wildly popular Pocket Museum and public art murals.

The alley has quickly become a must-see for visitors and locals. See info about the Pocket Alley’s history below and let me know if you would like to speak with an organizer about this adaptive attraction that has seen massive success during a global pandemic.

In August 2020, when Hattiesburg’s Saenger Theater closed due to the pandemic, leaders realized it was time to do something fun with the alley behind the theater.

Organizers opened a boarded-up window in the theater’s storeroom where they installed security glass, shelves and LED lights– creating the Pocket Museum. The alley took off from there – the city added string lighting and tables, artists were commissioned to paint murals and other interactive exhibits would soon follow. See details on each exhibit below:

  • The Pocket Museum, the smallest museum in the state, is a 48×36-inch window opening that frames four shelves, each one 12 inches deep and 36 inches wide. The museum is filled with a monthly-rotating collection of objects for visitors to view.
  • Past exhibitions include a collection of pocketknives, rubber ducks and Ramen.
  • The Pocket Art Gallery, the tiniest art gallery in Mississippi, is a renovated newspaper stand that included tiny easels, lighting and even tiny patrons – waiting to showcase visitors’ handmade art. Guests are encouraged to take a piece of art, leave a piece art or just have a look around. Art can be anything from abstract pieces to textile art and from wire art to collages, however, it must be less than 4”x6” to fit in the gallery.
  • The Pocket Theatre allows visitors to view super-short films through an eyepiece embedded in the alley wall. Films are changed out monthly and are themed to align with the pocket museum exhibit.
  • Public art can be seen throughout the Pocket Alley. A 3D depiction of The Beatles’ famous Abbey Road, the very discernable door from Friend’s, “#WhatLiftsYou Mural” painted by internationally renowned street mural artist Kelsey Montague and an original work called “Bubble Pups” by Lissa Pruett Ortego are among the murals on display.
  • The Pocket Alley is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year. Visitors don’t need to purchase tickets or even step inside an actual space to revel in the experience.