Published by Jeremy. Last Updated on February 11, 2023.
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In the category of off-beat Pittsburgh museums, the Big Mac Museum in North Huntingdon may be the most unusual of them all.
While this one is quite small and found, quite literally, inside a McDonald's, it does highlight the history of the famous burger that was invented nearby!
A Brief History of the Big Mac
Before visiting the museum, I really had no idea about the history of the Big Mac- other than it originated nearby.
The brief backstory is that the burger was created in 1967 by Jim Delligatti in the Pittsburgh area. Many locals will dispute the exact location of where the sandwich was created, but it is generally accepted that the burger was created at a Ross Township store off of McKnight Road.
From there, the sandwich struggled to take off in a couple of locations with different names, and the first use of the Big Mac moniker was rolled out at a store in Uniontown- about an hour southeast of the city. The rest, as they say, is history.
This history, starting with the Big Mac's unveiling in 1967, is captured at the Big Mac Museum in North Huntingdon (a location that, as far as we can tell, has little relation to the creation of the Big Mac other than being a Delligatti-owned franchise).
What You Can See at the Big Mac Museum
We'll be the first to say that calling this particular spot a tried and true museum is a bit of a stretch. It is a miniature museum at best, and a McDonald's with a few historical exhibits at worst depending on how you look at it.
The main highlight of this particular store is the History of the Big Mac wall that is found in the middle of the seating area.
This exhibit takes a chronological look at the milestones of the sandwich from its unveiling in 1967, to the roll out of its famous jingle in 1974, when Pittsburgh declared McDonald's Appreciation Day in 1992 (celebrating the 35th anniversary of McDonald's in the region, coincidentally the 25th anniversary of the Big Mac too), and more.
Beyond this, the shop features small displays of vintage McDonald's packages, wrappers, toys, and kids meals that brings back nostalgia and further add to the slight museum ambiance as well as a monster fabricated Big Mac out on display in the PlayPlace.
While I find it fascinating that the Big Mac was invented in the region, that is probably the biggest takeaway I got out of visiting the museum.
Well, that and the obligatory Big Mac I had to eat while there. Naturally.
The Big Mac Museum is located inside the McDonald's at 9061 US-30 in Irwin/North Huntingdon, PA- about 30 minutes east of Pittsburgh.
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