Minnesota Discovery Center
The Minnesota Discovery Center from the southeast
|Location||1005 Discovery Drive|
Chisholm, Minnesota, USA
The Minnesota Discovery Center, formerly known as Ironworld Discovery Center and originally as the Iron Range Interpretive Center, opened in the 1977 outside Chisholm, Minnesota, United States. It showcases northeastern Minnesota's "history and future" and includes a museum, entertainment venue, research library and park. The site offers various community programs and events including Polka fests, concerts, and fairs. The property also includes the Iron Man statue, and a memorial to Rudy Perpich and holds historical documents and artifacts related to mining in the Iron Range.
The 660-acre (270 ha) museum complex opened in 1977 as the Iron Range Interpretive Center with 34 exhibits and was renamed in 1984 as Ironworld USA. In 2009 it became the Minnesota Discovery Center.
It was built to celebrate the immigrants who built Minnesota's Iron Range mining region, including Italians, Finns, and Yugoslavs. It was supposed to draw tourists from around the state and other parts of the U.S., but in the late 1990s was struggling to live up to attendance expectations.
Due to shifting ground on the property with mine shafts beneath it, the tourist attraction faced a $2 million to $7 million cost in 2004 for filling and shoring up its foundation or to do complete reconstruction. It is located on the old Glen Mine property where there are abandoned mine shafts.
The Center include a 1920s trolley that travels along a "picturesque" 2.4-mile (3.9 km) railway that winds around the Pillsbury mine pit and Glen mine disembarkeing at Wilpen Train Depot. There is a renovated 1905 Hill's Finn Boarding House. There is also the Pellet Pete 19 hole mini-golf course. The Ironworld Museum has two floors of "exhibits about geology, mining, immigration and other aspects of the industrial and cultural history of the region," including the taconite mining process and the evolution of the industry on the Iron Range.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-06-17. Retrieved 2009-10-28.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- St. Paul Pioneer Press December 30, 2002
- Ironworld Gets New Name June 14, 2009 Associated Press/WCCO
- AT AGE 20, IRONWORLD FALLS SHORT OF MANY EXPECTATIONS//IDENTITY CRISIS, POOR ATTENDANCE PLAGUE FACILITY May 19, 1997 - 5B METRO St. Paul Pioneer Press (MN)
- IRONWORLD'S FUTURE IS ON SHAKY GROUND; IRON RANGE: OFFICIALS DEBATE WHETHER TO STABILIZE THE SHIFTING EARTH BENEATH THE CENTER OR TO RELOCATE PART OF IT. December 12, 2004 page 01C Duluth News-Tribune (MN)
- Henrylito D. Tacio Chisholm: Mining at its best[permanent dead link] August 05, 2006 Sun Star (Davao)