deanna doersch

MOIC Guest Experience

MOIC Waffle Cone Room: Guest Experience 

Guests take a self-guided stroll discovering the past, present and future of the waffle cone by exploring the inspiring stories of individuals who impacted the sweet treat. This room conveys themes like pursuing wild dreams and pop culture enchantment, all through a classical museum setting with new school accents. The experience is rounded out through smells and tastes of the treat-of-honor, along with pleasant sounds and exciting interactions with exhibit attendants. 

Take a look through Maria’s point of view as she experiences the Waffle Cone room at her day at the MOIC.


1. Maria sees the arched entrance to the next room, and without knowing what it is, she follows behind her fellow guests to explore.


4. Maria walks down the hallway to see a little exhibit case with an antique waffle iron inside. She stops to read the placard, which gives her just a taste of what’s to come. She’s excited to see more, so she continues through the archway to the main room.


7. Maria hands her phone to a exhibit attendant, and asks them to take a picture of her with the first sculpture. As she’s gets closer, she is able to see that the dress adorning the sculpture is made of waffle cones material. It looks textured, so she reaches up to feel it in contrast with the smooth surface of the sculpture. She then sits on the acrylic step, posing and holding up her waffle-cone as the attendant snaps a picture. Maria, pleased with the the shot, moves on to explore the exhibit case near the entrance.


2. As soon as Maria crosses the threshold of the room, a waft of something warm, baked, & vanilla-smelling crosses her path. The music transforms to a more classical tone, and she realizes that the booth she’s approaching is a ticket booth. She passes a sign with the museum’s hours reading: “Chicago Institute of Waffleology - Open daily from 9 am - 7 pm”


5. Through the archway, she sees a grand room. It’s bright and filled with very regal-looking art, but the thing that catches her eye most are the three large statues. She sees guests stepping up to pose on the bright colored pedestals, snapping photos with the sculptures. She stops a moment to keep munching on her waffle cone, taking everything in.


8. Done with her waffle cone snack, Maria looks for a garbage. She finds there are none in this room, but then a sign catches her eye. It reads: Done snacking? Crumple up your ticket and place on corresponding color” along with some instructive photos to illustrate. This sign is referring to the adjacent display, which is a wire frame painted different colors in the shape of a design. She sees other people using paper clips to pin their white tissue paper to the white squares, and the green tissue to the green squares. She follows suit, and then steps back to see a big mural she realizes she just helped to make with her fellow guests. She snaps a photo, and is excited she contribute to the experience for the future museum-goers.


3. She steps up to the booth and the attendant in a pink visor greets her. They ask for the token Maria had in her hand from the last room. The attendant hands her a ticket shaped tissue paper reading “eat me!” with a real waffle cone inside-- and she now realizes what she was smelling a few minutes earlier. The attendant tells her to enjoy her trip to the Institute, and points her down the hallway.


6. She walks up and analyzes the sculptures closer, where she sees that, from left to right, they are progressing through time. After reading the signs that accompany their space, she finds that the first is an Egyptian woman, symbolizing the creation of the sweet wafer in ancient times. The second sculpture is the founder of the modern day waffle cone, Syrian Immigrant Ernest A. Hamwi at the 1904 World’s Fair. The last is a little girl in a spacesuit, enthusiastically lick her ice cream cone-- presumably symbolizing the future of the waffle cone.


9. Maria turns one more time to take in how beautiful the room is. There are details in every corner, and she doesn't want to forget a thing. She runs her hand over the ornate design of the door frame, and exits the room.