First of Its Kind Automotive Teaching Museum to Provide Education, Craftsmanship in Nassau County
Nassau County Executive Edward P. Mangano today joined Autoseum President/Director Mike Manning and Vice President/Director Andy Perillo at the grand opening of the County’s new Automotive Teaching Museum a unique educational teaching facility that will develop the cars of tomorrow while serving as an institution of learning and craftsmanship. The Autoseum is partnering with BOCES for this educational program.
“This one-of-a-kind museum will develop the cars of the future and serve as an industry and commerce center right in Nassau County,” said County Executive Mangano. “It is these types of innovative ideas that will help Nassau continue to be a leader in industry and a model for other unique business opportunities.”
The Autoseum, which is located at 100 County Seat Drive in Mineola, will offer instruction in the field of automotive design. It will feature a fully functional auto body shop, along with regular classes and workshops demonstrating highly specialized equipment and techniques to students. In addition, the garage will provide hands-on experience by employing a rotating staff of interns and apprentices from schools and colleges across Long Island.
A permanent display of the famous automobiles, designed by George Barris, the “King of Kustomizers” and automaker to the stars, will include one of the original Batmobiles, the Aston Martin DB5 made famous in the James Bond movies and the Drag-U-La from TV’s Munsters. Revolving exhibit spaces will also showcase the work of other designers from across Long Island and the United States.
“In the same spirit of attracting film industry jobs to Nassau County and expanding what we started at Grumman Studios in Bethpage, the Autoseum will serve to provide an opportunity for students to not only build cars here, but also to learn the trade,” added County Executive Mangano.
Classes will open to students who are interested in pursuing the highly desirable field of auto customizing. Students can earn an Auto Body Customizing Certificate by taking a total of 210 hours of Adult Evening Courses. Pre-requisites such as Auto Customizing Fundamentals and Auto Customizing – Plastics and Metal, and electives that include Auto Customizing – Paint, Auto Customizing-Fiberglass and Wood, and Auto Collision Estimating and Appraisals round out the learning experience.
The Autoseum is the brainchild of Mike Manning and Andy Perillo, Long Island natives, who believe that this unique museum will preserve Long Island’s love of cars. The idea for the Autoseum was born in August of 2010, when Manning and Perillo hosted a Hollywood Stars Car Show at the Cradle of Aviation at the invitation of County Executive Mangano.
Two one-hour classes will be held in July and August to introduce students to the Autoseum and the course work involved. Then evening classes will begin on October 1, at the Autoseum Training Facility. Classes will feature professionals, including Manning and Perillo, demonstrating their craft. There will also be internship and apprenticeship programs for students from throughout Long Island and students will benefit from corporate seminars held at the Autoseum. The opportunity exists for students to assist with recreating some of the greatest cars from yesterday and today right in the facility.
In one of the first classes, Automotive Customizing, students will fabricate and shape car parts, grills, spoilers and scoops into unique shapes and sizes working with metal, fiberglass and rubber to reproduce parts. They will work on one-of-a-kind parts and custom designs. The anticipation is that initial sign up will be around 500 students and continue to grow.
Although the Autoseum is privately funded, it has received $50,000 in Federal Community Development Block Grant funds from Nassau County for equipment, training modules and scholarships. A total of $10,000 is dedicated to scholarships for 10 students.
Admission to the Autoseum, which will open on weekends in July, is free. Group visits and school trips can be arranged by appointment. For more information or to register for classes, please visit www.autoseum.org or call (516) 571-1894.