Oklahoma City

Science Museum Oklahoma works hard to reward curiosity at any age – Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 2021-10-15 19:52:35 –

They say that the best science never ends.

There is no absolute solution. There is no final discovery. In good science, every result should always lead to more questions, more research, and more discoveries.

It’s exactly the same spirit that the beloved OKC institution, Science Museum Oklahoma, is constantly changing. Without being content with the glory and long-standing love of the community, the SMO team is constantly moving forward, brainstorming new ideas for exhibits, events and, most importantly, interactivity.

“Great team”

Lindamaish, vice president of community engagement at the museum, said: “There are only about 170 staff, including everyone on the floor and behind the scenes. In fact, it’s a really small staff for a museum of this size.”

According to Maish, having such a relatively small number of staff means that not only is it easier for everyone to stay in touch, but it’s also more important.

“We definitely have to work together,” she told me. “We all go out to the floor together to move and sort things.”

Financing challenges

Part of the reason science museums maintain such a minimal crew is certainly economical. Most of their money comes from generous donations and is constantly raising money through funding events, donations and, of course, regular ticket sales and admission fees, but this long-standing icon is OKC’s culture and academia now. Not funded by the state or federal.

“What many are unaware of is the lack of government subsidies,” explained Maish. “We’ve received some in the past and are constantly applying, but we don’t have much state funding to go around in Oklahoma right now.”

Continuous evolution

But it does not delay or discourage their constant evolutionary goals. The museum has expanded, relocated, and updated incredible amounts over the past few years.

First and foremost, CurioCity is a vast, multi-faceted exploration area that was completed in 2015 and is open to the public, full of endlessly interactive exhibits designed for early childhood visitors. Maisch calls Curio City her baby.

“It’s about 20,000 square feet,” she said. “Even if it’s completely housed in a museum here, it’s actually bigger than most children’s museums across the country.”

While it’s clear that a lot of time, energy and love is devoted to making SMO fun and attractive to young children who are just beginning to be interested in working the world, Maisch is the team’s goal. Has a wide range of age groups and interests, from early childhood to teenagers, grandmas and grandpas.

“A lot of effort has been put into making sure everyone has something to get attention and enjoy here,” Maisch said. “If a family comes in and brings in a couple of children of different ages and the older child gets bored while the younger one is exploring, the older child suddenly directs the entire visit. Our goal is to prevent that from happening. “

From Tinkering Garage, where older kids can learn everything about creating and creating gadgets with real mechanical items, Destination Space is where kids play space-themed games and activities. Find a lot and adults can find real relics and souvenirs of the Space Race, as well as OK’s own famous space history.

Not to mention the Oklahoma Aerospace Hall of Fame, other art and history-oriented areas perfect for accommodating adult guests, or the countless ancient exhibits throughout the Science Floor. Any visitor can immediately recognize it.

Sherlock Holmes: Exhibit

SMOs don’t often hold temporary or traveling exhibitions, but sometimes they are too good to be missed. That’s how they got the chance to host the “Sherlock Holmes: Exhibition”.

Originally intended for a complete national tour, the exhibition designed in Europe canceled or postponed all other engagements due to COVID. This not only makes the Oklahoma Science Museum the only stop in the country, but it also allows it to continue to host exhibitions much longer than expected. Where it was supposed to close in September, it can actually be maintained until the end of the year and is open to amateur criminal solvers and murder mystery enthusiasts during weekends and museum events.

“There were so many closures here and around the world that it really became a question of whether to keep it here or to keep it here and have people enjoy it,” he said. Maisch described the decision of permission by the owner of the exhibition. SMO holds a vast installation far beyond the schedule.

“Sherlock Holmes: The Exhibit” is designed for mature viewers, focusing on the more pathological elements of murder and Victorian science, but the SMO team adheres to their goals and children. I found a way to keep them entertained. at the same time.

“We quickly realized that young children didn’t get much from the Holmes exhibit, so we decided to add a scavenger hunt to it,” explained Maish. “We hid small stuffed animals everywhere in the exhibit so they could search and find them, so they could have fun and become a” Baskerville Hound. ” I nodded. “

Faced with the uncertainty and turmoil of a global pandemic and the looming recession, the Oklahoma Science Museum continues to move forward without stopping its evolution or stopping its progress.

Maisch is visibly excited to discuss all of the museum’s future plans.

There is a large planetarium refurbishment project where the now non-functional omnidome is converted to the latest planetarium that houses one of the best digital programs in the world (a large scale by an incredibly generous anonymous donor). As a result of donations). There is also the next work of the museum’s adult series “SMO21”. This time around, spectators over the age of 21 will be treated with a lot of Halloween-themed horrors, such as wall bleeding and what’s called “chainsaw self-defense.”

But of all the projects and exhibits on the horizon, there is clearly something very special to Maisch and the entire team.

“At the end of this month, we plan to hold a whole new exhibition on empathy,” she said. “In this era, I can’t think of anything more important to teach.”

Visit sciencemuseumok.org for tickets, schedules, upcoming events, and all other information.

Last updated: October 15, 2021 18:54 Brett Dickerson-Editor

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