All adults in Poland still long for those evening encounters with their childhood heroes - G±ska Balbinka, Bolek and Lolek, Jacek and Agatka, Koziołek Matołek or Baltazar G±bka. Those ten minutes around seven in the evening were what children waited for all day long and when the time finally came, all backyards and playgrounds were deserted. Nothing mattered more than to wash your hands and turn the telly on in time to follow next amazing adventures of favorite cartoon characters. Most bedtime shows were - and still are - cartoons, animated cartoons or puppet shows, however, one thing remained unchanged and helped establish the strong position of the Polish "dobranocka".
In many families, bed-time cartoons mark the end of the day for the children, which is probably the only flaw the little ones can see in the show. Unfortunately, cartoons change. It is a disappointment that Polish national television has marginalized this lineup position, replacing artistic animations created in Poland or other Eastern countries with mass-produced Technicolor pulp in which images gallop so fast one must struggle to keep pace with the plot. .
The memory of our native cartoons remains in the hearts of those for whom that time in the evening was a special part of the day, the highlight. These memories have been the cornerstone of the Bedtime Show collection made up of roughly 2500 objects relating to popular animations, called "dobranocka" in Poland. The collection stems from childhood memorabilia of Wojciech Jama, the founder of the exhibition, and has been enriched for a few decades.
It includes seemingly ordinary objects, like food wrappings, which used to end up in the bin once their tasty content was devoured. Yet for that very reason, they have become incredibly rare. Back in the times of chronic and widespread deficiency, they weren't goods you bought, but goods you fought for. The exhibits of this type include Bolek i Lolek chewing gum, Maja, Pty¶ and Wilk i Zaj±c chocolate bars, as well as yogurts, candy, and others. Moreover, there are intact grocery and cosmetic products - the wrapping and its original content - Maja artificial honey, Jacek i Agatka oil, or Jacek i Agatka, Pty¶ and G±ska Balbinka soap bars.
However, some exhibits are exceptionally attractive. Those include such items as genuine dolls used in puppet shows:
Moreover, the collection incorporates numerous toys, games of chance, PC games, board games, puzzles, books, comic books, year's issues of various magazines, theater programs, cinema and theater posters, slides and many types of projecting devices. Also, there are stamp collections, post stamps, postcards with frames from cartoons and 8 mm films. Visitors may admire some everyday objects like wall clocks, alarm clocks, trays, dishes and ceramic mugs.
There are several graphic works created in various techniques and inspired by popular bedtime shows, pennants and badges from tourist trips, tags on pins, piggy banks, thermometers and vinyl discs with radio plays on them.
All in all, this collection of ordinary and extraordinary items is a chance to see more than just cartoons. It proves the popularity once enjoyed by bedtime shows and their existence outside the magical 10 minutes in the evening. For the past three years, part of the collection has been published online at www.muzeumdobranocek.pl.
Entries in the website Visitor's Book and over 70 publications in press and other media, both national and foreign prove that for quite some time the collection has been serving goals attributed to museums in the Act on Museums of 21 November, 1996.
In January 2006, the owner of the collection made a proposal to the president of Rzeszów - he would present the city with the collection in return for establishing a Bedtime Show Museum in Rzeszów. Founding of the museum would enable scientific study of these gripping items, followed with making them available to a wider public and systematic contributions. This solution would be beneficial for both the city and its visitors.