The Coca-Cola Co. is celebrating its 100th anniversary of becoming a publicly traded company by offering free admission to The World of Coca-Cola for the first time on Dec. 8, as well as a commemorative glass Coca-Cola bottle while supplies last.
The first Coca-Cola was served in Atlanta on May 8, 1886. The company made its initial public offering in 1919.
The original World of Coca-Cola museum opened in 1990 in Underground Atlanta beneath a 30-foot high neon Coca-Cola sign, drawing some 9 million visitors, until 2007.
A new museum opened that same year with a 20-acre complex just north of Centennial Olympic Park in downtown Atlanta. The Pemberton Place complex also includes the Georgia Aquarium and the Center for Civil and Human Rights, just blocks from where John Pemberton — pharmacist, Civil War veteran and Knoxville, Ga. native — created the original Coca-Cola formula in 1886.
Museum visitors can sample more than 100 drinks from around the world, see the vault where Coca-Cola’s secret recipe is guarded and snap photos with the iconic Coca-Cola Polar Bear.
The Coca-Cola Company is also marking its 100th anniversary on Dec. 9 by ringing the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange.