More people in Salt Lake came out opening weekend than any other of the six cities it’s visited, including cities as large as Los Angeles and Philadelphia.
“The people of Utah, we're well educated we have a level of curiosity and we're not a second tier city by any means,” said Bryton Sampon, communications manager for The Leonardo.
The big numbers are just what the museum needed. Its last exhibit, Da Vinci, didn’t get off to as strong of a start. “You're not going to find a lot of 3 year-olds that are fascinated by Leonardo Da Vinci the way they are fascinated by mummies,” said Sampson.
In its first five days Mummies brought in 7,000 people. Da Vinci only attracted 50,000 people during its entire exhibit. The Leonardo hopes mummies will pay off as big as the wildly popular Body Worlds exhibit which brought in 350,000 people.
“I would love to see it do as well as Body Worlds,” said Sampson. “Body Worlda is the most successful traveling exhibit of all time, so it's a high bar to set.”
If opening weekend is any indication, Mummies could help set The Leonardo on a path to future success. “I think Mummies is really going to help us get to our goal which is to become a fixture in this community and a gathering place downtown,” said Sampson. “Everyone is going to love this, but they are going to see what The Leonardo is all about.”
Mummies of the World will be at The Leonardo though May 27.