Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum
The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum was founded in 1978, with approval from the city of Ann Arbor, as a touring collection of exhibits built by local specialists and volunteers. The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum opened at its permanent location in 1982 in the city's historic brick firehouse with 25 exhibits on two floors, one staff person and ten volunteers.
During the Museum’s first year of operation, it welcomed 25,000 guests. The visitors’ interest and enthusiasm propelled the Museum to accelerate expansion plans. Four years later the museum opened the third and fourth floors of the firehouse with the help of a Kresge Foundation Challenge Grant. In 1993, the Museum purchased several adjoining buildings, which led to the introduction of expanded facilities and educational programs, in October 1999. Five separate grants received over several years from the National Science Foundation funded the creation of new exhibits, including How Things Work and Solve-It Central, which toured through many science museums throughout the United States and Canada.
The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum now features over 250 interactive exhibits on subjects including physics, geology, math, music, and technology.
All About You is an exhibit that explores the human body, featuring a Huron City Ambulance, a physical fitness gauge, and more.
Light and Optics looks into the dynamics of how light bends, how light creates shadows, and how it can be applied.
Legacy Gallery displays a variety of simply machines to present how seemingly complex systems work. For instance, How internet packet delivery is accomplished or the magnetisms behind Tesla's egg.
Lyon's Country Store Exhibit recreates a country store setting from the 1920s.
Michigan Nature Discover Room exhibits an interactive nature wall and soundscape.
Preschool Gallery is an area designed especially for children younger than 4.
World Around You
Concourse features building in a building, whisper dishes, and more.
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