Museum of Science & Industry, Chicago, IL
March 4, 2006
Story by Chris Spice (Darth Spice)
Photos by Jason D. Meyers, Ret. (Dead Hero)


It has been what seems like so little, but when you reflect back you realize how time truly flies when you are having fun. It was back in 2004 when dustrho and I were on a mission to the Museum of Science and Industry for Action: An Adventure in Movie Making with the Midwest Garrison. It was at that moment we realized while we had quite a lot of cool stuff in our Star Wars collections, the costumes we had just taken a ton of pictures of was certainly something we were lacking, if there could be anything. Although it did take quite a bit of time for the both of us to get our gear and appropriately transform it from Storm to Sandtrooper, needless to say it was one that would change the hobby for us forever. As I packed up my gear last night and prepared for not just to go down and get a good story for, I was ready for a mission that was two years in the making in the return to MSI.

After making a fashionably late appearance, I quickly got ready and located the rest of the team. At the start we would be used to lure the long line of Museum-goers into the exhibit Game On that we were there to promote. For such a busy place, the people were very calm and quite surprised to see such an entertainment while merely waiting in line. It was clear by how many times people were asking what were there for that they were surly interested in the gaming exhibit, I mean honestly if you were born anytime after 1970, who doesn’t like video games?

For fun we hunt Jedi and Jawas.As we are only scheduled there for a short period of time, the great people at the Museum like to move us around from place to place. We all got behind Lord Vader and were guided to an escalator that brought us up into the great hall that was just adjacent to the exhibit. Darth Vader, Anakin Skywalker, a few Storm and Scout Troopers, both factions of the Force were also well represented by a pair of Jedi. With a TIE Pilot and Princess Leia rounding out the group, you could say there was no shortage of Star Wars. The heavy artillery was well represented with dustrho and myself filling the role of Sandtroopers. It was truly something that felt like an achievement after two plus years. To go from being a spectator to a participant is truly one of the greatest things you could possibly experience. If you were getting tired of the same old plastic figures, I’d look up your local branch and see about enlisting today!

After our time concluded, we were able to go inside the exhibit and snap a few pictures of what is more than certainly a huge part of any Troopers history. From the original Pong, Space Invaders, Galaxian, Pac-Man, and on and on we had a pretty good time going down memory lane. What could have been the most amazing thing is while you might not have been as good as you were at Pitfall as you once were, you still remembered all the strategies you needed to get Harry through the jungle! I think after not playing for over twenty-five years I did quite all right!

There was quite a few Star Wars games with the first sit-down version that was released in 1983 that we just couldn’t’ get enough of. That must have been a great year for games as we were able to see concept art from Dragons Lair, the game that justified putting fifty cents into a game, when all the rest were a quarter. There was just so much to look at. The Nintendo Power Glove, all the tabletop and hand held games, and to see it all in one place. The memories just keep crashing into your mind like a day at the ocean. It takes you back to a time when all the worries you have right now were that of your parents and the only things that mattered to you were Star Wars and video games. For me, two the greatest escapes I ever had while growing up. It was an honor and a privilege to serve and bring a smile to the faces of the next generation, and while the journey came full circle today I can only look forward to the continued journey for the years to come. United We Find Troopers!

To see the two photo galleries below just click on the corresponding links.