So I said my next post would be about the Richmond Slave Trail. I lied. How was I to know there would be breaking news in the meantime?  While writing the Museums and Art Galleries chapter of Insiders’ Guide to Richmond this past winter and spring, I wanted to know the status of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond’s old money museum that was closed, but in the process of being renovated within the Minoru Yamasaki- (architect of the World Trade Center Twin Towers) designed building.

Spies on Segways looking for clues.

More emails and phone calls than seemed strictly necessary ensued, but as my deadline approached, the Fed was willing to tell me only that they wanted to be included in the guidebook and that there would be an exhibit open to the public sometime. In the interests of secrecy however they weren’t inclined to give me any information.  No name, no hours, no description. Easiest entry to write in the whole book. “Don’t miss something, I’m not sure what, at the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.” Finally, at the last minute, without so much as a background check, I was sworn to secrecy since the employees themselves had not been told what the name of the attraction would be.  Somehow I managed to smuggle out a press release. 

For months now I’ve struggled to keep this to myself, but now that the story broke in Saturday’s T-D, I can finally let out my breath:   The Fed Experience is the name of the new museum at the Fed. You wouldn’t believe how keeping that secret ate up my insides. Starting tomorrow, The Fed Experience will be open during the week. It’s geared toward middle-school aged children, but let’s face it, most American adults don’t have a handle on money and finance, including many who work in the financial industry, so I bet most people could learn a thing or two there.  Admission is free, pre-registration  is suggested, and security screening is required. You heard it here first–or second.

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