Discovery Station

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The exterior of Discovery Station at Hagerstown, Inc.
Discovery Station at Hagerstown, Inc.
Established July 5, 1996 (1996-07-05)
Location 101 West Washington Street, Hagerstown, Maryland, 21740
Type Hands-On Museum
Website http://www.discoverystation.org/

Discovery Station, is a hands-on, family-friendly museum in downtown Hagerstown, Maryland, United States that opened to the public in 2005. The museum's focus is to create an environment that stimulates curiosity for discovery, exploration, and further investigation through exhibits and programs that focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM) principles. The museum is a member of the Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC), the American Alliance of Museums (AAM), and the NASA Museum Alliance.

The museum is located in a historic bank building across from the Washington County Courthouse. The original bank housed the Federal Depository during the Civil War. Visitors can enter the main vault and examine its mammoth leaded glass door and mechanisms. With its white marble exterior and soaring palladium windows, the building is one of the most architecturally significant in downtown Hagerstown.

Discovery Station is visited by thousands of visitors each year and is especially popular with children.

Exhibits[edit]

LEGO® Robotics Education Exhibit

The exhibit contains three sections. The first section focuses on the construction and programming of LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Education EV3s. The second section features two LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Education EV3 Arena Challenges, where visitors can compete against one another. Finally, the third section focuses on the real world application of robotics.

The LEGO® Robotics and Education exhibit and associated programs that are conducted by Discovery Station at Hagerstown, Inc. are not affiliated, sponsored, or endorsed by LEGO Education or The LEGO Group.

Dinosaur Exhibit

A full-scale cast model of a Triceratops skull acquired by Discovery Station is on exhibit. Included in the Dinosaur Exhibit are fossil tracings, a dinosaur dig, literature, and other interactive activities providing hands-on learning experiences.

Space and Beyond Exhibit

A quarter-scale model of the NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft is on display. This exhibit also touches upon the future of space exploration and the colonization of Mars.

Discovery Station Race Car Derby

This hands-on exhibit features a large-scale race car track for toy cars. The display teaches children and adults the basics of kinetic and potential energy.

Hagerstown Aviation Exhibit

Exhibit includes equipment and electronics displays, an experimental Papoose airplane built in Washington County, and a hands-on, child-friendly, interactive Cessna 150 with full instrumentation and indicators. Museum visitors can sit in the cockpit and take turns working the controls.

A 1/5 scale replica of the famous PT-19 trainer is on permanent display courtesy of the late Jack Garrott, who piloted a PT-19 during World War II and constructed the flyable model.

The RMS Titanic Exhibit

An exact replica of the RMS Titanic is on display at Discovery Station. It is one of the largest models of the legendary ship ever constructed and took ten years to build. Created by Norman Little from plans and drawings of the original ship, the one-sixtieth scale navigable craft is over fifteen feet in length, weighs 500 pounds, and contains over one thousand portholes. Authentic fittings, stained glass, and passenger replicas add to the realism and historical exactness of the Titanic exhibit.

This award-winning Titanic model has been featured on TV, in newspapers and magazines, and on the cover of Model Tech magazine. It is seaworthy and has been sailed by radio control on waterways in Florida, where it was built.

Upcoming Exhibits[edit]

Discovery Station will be opening a new exhibition in late 2016. This hands-on “Sustainability Exhibit” will allow visitors to explore the impact of applying renewable energy practices to their daily lives while enabling them to become the sustainable practitioners of the future.

This exhibit will contain hands-on features pertaining to:

  • Recycling
  • Solar Energy
  • Waste Management
  • Food Production
  • Weather Forecasting

In 2017, Discovery Station will also be opening a new exhibit called "STEAM Machine: Moving Ahead With The Future". This hands-on exhibit will encompass numerous STEAM principles.

Weekly Programs[edit]

Discovery Station holds weekly science experiments and STEAM activities each Saturday. These "Saturday Plus Programs" are free with the price of admission into Discovery Station and are usually hands-on.

Discovery Station also hosts an ongoing "Story-Time" program that occurs each Wednesday at 11 a.m..

Non-Profit Status[edit]

Discovery Station at Hagerstown, Inc. is governed by a volunteer board whose members serve without compensation. Members serve three-year terms. Currently, Discovery Station has only one paid staff personnel. Programs and activities are conducted by the officers and directors assisted by an enthusiastic and dedicated group of volunteers from throughout the region.

Discovery Station at Hagerstown, Inc. is a private, nonprofit organization, incorporated in the State of Maryland on July 5, 1996. Discovery Station is tax exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code, as of March 11, 1997. Discovery Station is a charitable organization, registered with the Maryland Office of the Secretary of State, Charitable Organization Division (telephone: 410.974.5534).

Fundraisers[edit]

Discovery Station hosts several fundraisers throughout the year to offset the costs associated with operations, program development and exhibit creation.

  • Casino Royale - This fundraiser event is an evening of casino games held in Hagerstown, MD each year.
  • Superhero 5k - This is a themed 5k run that is held in Hagerstown,MD each year.
  • Discovery Golf Classic - This golf tournament is an ongoing shared fundraiser between Discovery Station and the Hagerstown Lions Club.
  • Hangarfest - This event is a rock concert held at the Rider Jet Center in Hagerstown, MD. Discovery Station co-hosts this event with the Breast Cancer Awareness of the Cumberland Valley.
  • Surgeons vs. Chefs - This event is a pumpkin carving competition between local surgeons and chefs. It is held at the rustic Springfield Barn in Williamsport, MD.

Coordinates: 39°38′35″N 77°43′22″W / 39.64306°N 77.72278°W / 39.64306; -77.72278