Attractions

A Visit to That Yoda Guy Museum in St. Maarten

When our cruise ship made a stop on the Caribbean island of St. Maarten, the last thing I expected to run into was a Star Wars exhibit. But as we were getting off the ship, one of the crew members pointed to my son’s Grogu shirt and said, “You like Yoda? You need to see That Yoda Guy!”

As soon as I heard that, I was like, “I like Yoda! Tell me!” And she told us about That Yoda Guy Museum, which was a short walk from where the ship was docked. I was filled with geeky excitement as we took off down one of the main streets on the hunt for the infamous Yoda guy. Turns out, the museum was pretty easy to spot!

that yoda guy move museum exhibit

That Yoda Guy Movie Museum

“That Yoda Guy” is Nick Maley, a special effects make-up artist best known for his work on Yoda in the Star Wars films. He’s worked on a total of 53 films, many of them huge ’80s blockbusters like Superman and Highlander. He collected a ton of movie props and memorabilia along the way and added to it over the years to create an impressive collection.

And then, as the sign explains in the museum, he sold his Lamborghini and retired to the islands! Then at some point, I guess he decided to open a museum to exhibit all the cool things he collected. He also uses the museum to support a non-profit foundation he founded encouraging kids to follow their dreams.

So, to gain entry into the museum portion of the exhibit, you need to pay the entrance fee, which is really a “donation” to the foundation. Otherwise, you are free to browse the shop portion of the exhibit, where you can actually meet and talk with Nick himself.

On an Island, Far, Far Away

The store part of the museum has a lot of neat memorabilia available for purchase, like vintage posters and movie scripts. However, you’ll find no prices on the pieces because they count those purchases as a donation, and then you receive a “gift” for your donation.

that yoda guy museum shop before the exhibit

After a quick look around, we headed into the museum, which has memorabilia from many different movies, but is heavy on the Star Wars side. There’s a large collection of life casts of actor’s faces, which is used when creating prosthetic pieces. There’s even a cast of Abraham Lincoln’s face! Although that one may have been a death mask, I can’t remember if the card said so or not.

You’ll find a lot of neat behind-the-scenes info, including photos from the Star Wars sets and details about the early designs of the costumes. It’s a bit dark all through the museum, so my pics are a little dark. They said it was OK to take photos, just not with the flash.

There were also displays from horror movies like Hellraiser and Lifeforce. I remember my mom taking me to the movie theater to see Lifeforce when it came out. It’s a pretty scary movie for a little kid, but the part I remember most is when the aliens first arrive, the women are naked, and my mom unsuccessfully tried to cover my eyes! Seeing the display made me want to watch the movie again, as I’m sure I can handle a few naked aliens now, lol.

There is of course, plenty of Yoda stuff, including a video playing of Nick being interviewed about helping to create Yoda. There is also Star Wars memorabilia from the newer films as well as the classics.

Overall, it’s definitely worth the visit! It’s a pretty neat and unexpected thing to find in the middle of the Carribean. Be sure to check it out if you ever find yourself on St. Maarten!

star wars celebrity

About the Author

Candy Keane is a digital content creator and long-time cosplayer, most well-known for being on the cover of the Star Wars documentary Jedi Junkies. After making costumes professionally for over a decade, she now writes about about geek culture and mom life, and continues to cosplay for fun, while sharing her love of costumes on Instagram @SewGeekMama. Her first children’s book, I’m Going to My First Comic Convention, was published in 2020 and won a Story Monsters Approved award for Excellence in Literature.

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