By Belle Bressler of the Dr Pepper Museum
Check out these 10 things you probably wouldn't expect to find in the 23 soda poppin’ stops at the Dr Pepper Museum & Free Enterprise Institute!
1) Old Corner Drug Store
This famous drug store, owned by Wade Morrison was located just a few blocks away from the Museum at the corner of 4th and Austin. Our model Old Corner Drug Store is one of the first stops to see at the Museum! The Old Corner Drug Store includes the soda fountain, the cigar counter, and the pharmacy. Come in and listen as Dr. Alderton tells the story of Dr Pepper’s invention.
2) Bottling Equipment & Meyer-Dunmore Bottle Washer
All Dr Pepper was bottled on the first floor of the AMBC building, where you can find the bottling equipment and Meyer-Dunmore Bottle Washer. The machine on the left is from 1898 and was manually operated by one worker. One worker could bottle about eight Dr Peppers a minute on this machine. The machine on the far right was fully automated. To speed up the process this machine bottled about 20 Dr Peppers a minute.
The Meyer-Dunmore Junior bottle washer is a smaller version of the one that was used in the bottling plant. Back in the early days of the soft drink industry, companies recycled used bottles by refilling them. At that time you would purchase your Dr Pepper and pay a deposit on the bottle. The bottles were then brought back to the plant where they would clean them in a machine just like this one!
3) Artesian Well
Located next to the bottling machines is the well that provided water in the early years of Dr Pepper bottling. An underground aquifer of artesian water was the source. The water from the well was pumped to the third floor to be filtered and distilled, then it came back down to the first floor through hoses. In the 1920s the well was filled with broken bottles and forgotten until the restoration of the building in the 1980s. They excavated to the depth of 27 and a half feet, which is what you can see today!
4) 1924 Ford Truck
Model T delivery trucks were used to haul Dr Pepper from the bottling plants to country stores or service stations. You’ll notice it’s different from modern 18 wheelers! You can find this Model T parked outside Wilton’s Landing on the second floor of the AMBC building.
5) Selling Soda: Your Favorite Commercials
Sing along to your favorite Dr Pepper jingle! Stop in our theater located on the third floor of the AMBC building. Here you can find your favorite Dr Pepper commercials on repeat.
6) Good for Life Mural
Painted by C.B. Morgan in the 1940s, the mural was restored in 1990 and moved to its current location. Take advantage of this fun photo opportunity! The mural is located out in the courtyard.
7) Liquid Lab
Become your own beverage chemist, or take a look at what is behind the bubbles! Live shows are presented throughout the day. Explore our love of soda pop with some poppin’ experiences in the East Wing Building. Show times are posted in the lab and at the admissions desk.
8) Out-of-the-Ordinary Raceway
Open for contestants of all ages. Pick your car, place it in the starting blocks and let it roll. Dr Pepper began sponsoring racecars in 1998 as a marketing strategy. The Dr Pepper logo was first seen at NASCAR on the #50 car whose most famous driver was Tony Roper, and continues today with David Ragan in the #23 car.
9) Holt Beverage Company Bottling Line
This mock line demonstrates 7UP bottling between 1975 and 1985 by the Holt and Getterman families. Watch the bottles as they travel down the conveyor belts and fill with 7UP. This gallery was named in honor of the Holt-Getterman family who are a great example of the success and growth of the soda industry through its unique franchise system. In 1936, E.E. Holt, president of the Holt Beverage Company, signed an exclusive contract with 7up for distribution in the nine counties surrounding Waco. Soon after, the company changed its name to the 7up Bottling Company of Waco.
10) Frosty’s Soda Shop
Our 1950s soda fountain is where you get some handmade Dr Pepper. Mix it with creamy Blue Bell Ice Cream for a perfect treat! Make sure to stop by before leaving the Museum!
Visit the Dr Pepper Museum throughout the year Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and on Sunday from 12 to 5:30 p.m. Discounts are available for seniors, students, and military guests. Visit www.drpeppermuseum.com for more information and pricing.