Don Wildman is the current host and narrator of Off Limits, Mysteries at the Museum, and Monumental Mysteries on the Travel Channel. He also hosted and narrated Weird Travels that formerly aired on the Travel Channel.
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Hey guys, I'm Don Wildman, host of "Mysteries at the Museum" on Travel Channel Friday nights.
The eight season of the show is premiering THIS Friday night - April 3rd - and we're going to be digging even deeper in museums and archives around the world.
A little bit about me: I've been traveling for YEARS on television and on my own. Museums have been a passion of mine since I was a kid. And a lucky confluence of events led me to becoming the host of a show that lets me make a living doing what I love.
Victoria's helping me get started. AMA!
Thanks for the questions guys! I really hope you get a chance to watch the new Mysteries at the Museum season starting on Friday April 3rd 9/8c Travel Channel. It's an honor to bring it to you and send feedback and questions to my Facebook page or tweet me @donwildman! Thanks again
Hey Don, love the show. It's reminding me of how much I loved history as a kid.
What has been your favorite item or story shown so far?
What are your favorite historical eras?
and just for the fun of it, what is your favorite breakfast food(s)?
Wow! I've done 1,000 stories... my favorite one is the story that's coming up on a future episode. It's the story of Gordon Cooper, a Mercury Astronaut, who finds out that he doesn't have the equipment hooked up to get back into the atmosphere, and he has to manually guide himself in by steaming up the window of his capsule, drawing a horizontal line in the steam, and then using that straight line to help him navigate back to earth.
I like the 1920's in the United States. Cuz it's Prohibition, it's Mafia, a lot of cool & important things going on. It's when the United States really took off as a world power.
And I eat granola with blueberries.
What is your favorite museum and why?
I'm a Philly boy, so my favorite museums are where I grew up.
If you ever walk through the Heart at the Franklin Institute, you'll know what I'm talking about.
hands down oreos
Have you ever been to the Weather Museum in Houston? Apparently it's really something.
No I haven't. Sounds GREAT. But the weather in Houston is incredibly humid!
Do you feel very brave participating in and ask me anything for him?
I'm just making this up as I go along. In the words of Indiana Jones.
How do you get ideas for stories? Do you have a team of researchers or do museums approach you to do a story?
We do. Floors of people in New York are working every day at this. I mean it's awesome
What's the most exciting museum or artifact you got to investigate in the next season?
you know what? cellophane was really cool. I forget where it was but you can't believe the origin story of that stuff.
What is your favorite museum in the world Don?
It changes...but right now I'd say the British Museum in London
What made you passionate about museums ?
Same as bookshops. I like to know the world's bigger than me.
Don, how does MATM choose which stories to tell? Can viewers submit ideas?
Send 'em to me on Facebook! Or Twitter.
What is your favorite city/location to visit and why?
In the United States, I like Chicago.
Because it's America's only homegrown metropolis. It's the most "American" of the big cities.
Well, above I said Chicago. But now I'll say San Francisco. Because I change my mind a lot.
Has there ever been a moment where you completely freaked out or other similar situations when doing Cities of the Underworld? You are the man every man should be!
Well, I'm flattered. Yeah, sewers give me pause. Freaked out, no. But alarmed at life threatening gases, yes.
Hi Don! Do you prefer doing MATM or things like Off Limits?
I like it all. Basically I like to work.
I was a huge fan of Cities of the Underworld! But it's extremely hard to find anymore, the DVD's aren't available... any idea how to watch that great show now? And why was that show so short lived? I thought it was very interesting.
Its on so often on the weekends. people write me all the time about this. Just keep your eye out!
hey don- i'm excited for the new season... what makes season 8 fresh?
Farther afield and deeper in...eight seasons means we have to try harder. a lot harder
most valuable artifact on the show?
wow. that's tough. we don't really get monetary values. but in terms of history, something George Washington touched would probably qualify
First off, the show is one of my favorites. I've been addicted since the very beginning. Also, I've always dreamed of doing something similar to this show. I wish there were internship opportunities for something like this!
Anyways, I was wondering about the logistical aspect of the episodes. How long does it take to complete an episode? Also, when will Monumental Mysteries be returning and is there any chance of another spin off?
THANK YOU FOR THIS. Um..I feel the same about the show and glad you like. from start to finish it's about 3 months a story. But it varies. we have crews running all over the world
As for MM, it's up in the air but I'll let you know promise
What museums that you haven't been to do you really want to visit someday?
That is good question. Top of the list in the Hermitage in Russia. Then...hm...in Edinburgh, where I've yet to visit
What's the creepiest thing you've ever seen in a museum?
Annabelle the doll. It's at the Occult Museum in Connecticut.
What do you like to do when you relax?
I'm a letter writer. yep old school. a pen and paper and a sore hand.
What's the oldest museum artifact you've researched? Any museums you've been wanting to do a story on?
I guess it would have to be the dinosaurs, right? 65 million years ago. I'm a fan of the Christopher Sanderson House in Chadds Ford PA
If you could steal one artifact from any museum, what would you choose?
In the LA Natural History Museum there's a case with tons of gold. I think about the heist every time I visit
Hey Don, If you could film a movie from any story you've covered from MATM what would it be?
I like the story of the doctor in Kansas who was the Admiral of the Kansas Navy. it involved somethign I probably shouldn't write about here
Hey Don. I am a huge fan of the show. It has shown me people and events from history I never knew about. I have a question: Has there ever been a story covered that was so outlandish, you didn't believe it was real at first?
Every show has one! It's amazing how crazy history is--especially when me and a team of researchers go looking for the best stories.
Hey Don, awesome show! I was wondering, I went to the Louvre in Paris and it was an amazing museum but way to big for a single day. Can you give me a few museums that I could get the most out of in one day? Also from Philly Go Eagles!
Depends on where you live. I'll toss out the City of New York Museum. Pretty doable
OH you're from Philly. Well, head on down to the Mutter and have at it!
Which story on MATM took you by surprise?
Coming up is the story of Buzz Aldrin and the famous space pen...had no idea how close we came to having a failed return of Apollo 11.
Hey Don- My family loves your show! We watch together every week!! We're heading to Greece in May. Any tips? Any chance you head there this season? If not- where else internationally do you go? And lastly- do you like international or domestic visits better? Thanks!
Thanks so much. That's great--I have never been to Greece, I'm sorry to say, so I'm JEALOUS. You're gonna have a great time. Head to Turkey if you can in life. It's amazing...domestic? Great Northwest!
Awesome, I'll check it out! I love the show Don, keep up the great work! So can you tell us what's on the first show coming up?
The Hagley Museum in Wilmington, Delaware displays a transparent roll of film that symbolizes how an accidental discovery revolutionized the retail industry. The Sitka Historical Society in Alaska has in its collection a jacket that belonged to a prankster whose explosive sense of humor caused a widespread panic. And at the King Richard III Visitor's Center in Leicester, England, an unconventional excavation finally lays to rest a 500-year-old mystery
Any cool artifacts in your home?
Oh yeah. I have a zillion. one piece in the 100 year old worship cane I brought back from Ethiopia. I use it for spiritual strength
Do you watch any other shows on Travel Channel? If yes- which host would you want to swap places with? haha!
Wouldn't mind a few of Bert Kreiser's gigs.