Jun 22, 2023 - Things to Do

Your guide to A Christmas Story House and Museum

Living room with blue couch, christmas tree and table with the famous leg lamp from "A Christmas Story"

What would drag you away from the soft glow of electric sex gleaming in the window? Photo: Lindsey Erdody/Axios

👋 Axios Editor Lindsey here. If visiting A Christmas Story House and Museum isn't on your Cleveland bucket list, it should be.

Driving the news: Watching "A Christmas Story" every year is one of my favorite holiday traditions, so when I was recently in Cleveland, this was my first stop.

  • Don't judge me.

How it works: Buy tour tickets at the gift shop. (General admission is $18.)

  • Tours start at 10:15am outside the iconic house and run every half hour.

The intrigue: Once inside the house, the tour guide shared some fun facts and then let us loose.

You won't shoot your eye out: You can hold and take photos with a Red Ryder BB gun, a blue bowling ball, a leg lamp fresh out of the "fragile"-labeled box. Upstairs, you can use a decoder ring in the bathroom and pretend to write a theme on what you want for Christmas at Ralphie's desk.

What I learned: They used potato shavings and soap to mimic snow because Cleveland had a mild winter the year the film was made.

  • When Ralphie's old man runs outside to admire his major award, the neighbor that walks by is Bob Clark, director of the movie, and he's wearing a Cleveland firefighters jacket (film is set in Hammond, Indiana).
  • When Flick gets his tongue "stuck" to the flagpole (PVC pipe and a suction machine) and begs for Ralphie and Schwartz not to leave him, that line was genuine. The cast and crew pranked him, keeping the suction machine running after ringing the bell for lunch early.
woman holding the iconic leg lamp from "A Christmas Story."
When's the last time you won a major award? Photo: Courtesy of Lindsey Erdody/Axios

After the house, the tour moves to the museum across the street, where some props are on display.

  • Entire tour takes about an hour.

I triple-dog dare ya: Pay an extra $10 to wear a pink bunny suit during the tour.

If you go: 3159 W. 11th St., 10am-5pm every day.

Go deeper: Peter Billingsley to take part in "A Christmas Story" reunion


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