Local museum named best art museum in country

See letters written by every President, amazing art at Booth Western Art Museum

CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- Art lovers routinely descend on New York, Los Angeles and Washington D.C. to check out some of the nation’s best art. It might be time for them to pencil in a trip to Cartersville, too.

The Booth Western Art Museum recently ranked No. 1 in USA Today’s 10Best Reader’s Choice awards. It beat out the Metropolitan Museum in New York City, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Chicago Art Institute and the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

“Wow," Booth Museum Executive Director Seth Hopkins said when learning of the honor. "We were honored just to be nominated with so many other outstanding museums across the country. I am blown away by the loyalty of our patrons.”

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The Booth Western Art Museum is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and features 120,000 square feet of contemporary Western artwork, a presidential gallery, Civil War art gallery and an interactive children’s gallery.

“I think it shows how strongly people like our museum and that they were engaged in voting every day, as well as encouraging their friends and family to do so, as well," Hopkins said. "It is quite flattering. Nationally, we are...probably the least known museum on the entire list so it’s a win that is kind of like slaying 19 Goliaths at the same time.”

The museum was also named the 2016 Escape to the Southeast Travel Attraction of the Year by the Southeast Tourism Society.