Museum of Discovery and Science
|Established||1976(as The Discovery Center)|
|Location||Fort Lauderdale, Florida|
The Museum of Discovery and Science is a museum located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. It is one of the largest museums of its kind in Florida, and has the most visitors of any museum in the state. The museum features its own AutoNation IMAX theater, and shows 3-D IMAX films in which viewers wear special glasses and headsets. The museum also features a number of "ecoscapes", as well as a simulated ride to Mars, a simulated airboat ride in the Everglades and a MaxFlight airplane flight simulator. Among the more popular aspects of the museum are the quantity and variety of Floridian animal species on display. The public are allowed to get quite close to the animal life such as otters, baby alligators, snakes, tortoises, rabbits, bats, tarantulas, scorpions, geckos, cockroaches, centipedes, hermit crabs, freshwater fish, freshwater stingrays, black pacus, frogs, tadpoles, alligator snapping turtle, turtles, sharks, saltwater fish, horseshoe crabs and a sea turtle, and the museum frequently has organized animal-centered demonstrations, or more informal meet-and-greets with native and exotic Florida fauna.
Other than the animals on display, the Museum of Discovery and Science currently features a Discovery Center for ages 7 and under, Go Green exhibit, Runways to Rockets including airplane simulators and information about space, Powerful You! exhibit, minerals and rocks on display, prehistoric fish and dinosaur eggs and fossils on display, games, puzzles, the Explore Store, food concessions, and a moving exhibit.
The Museum of Discovery and Science moved to its current location in downtown Fort Lauderdale in 1992. The "Great Gravity Clock" in front of the entrance is one of the main features of the museum and is one of only three in the world. The other two are in Japan and Mexico. The museum plays host to birthday parties, (sea) turtle walks and camp-ins, and has its own summer camp.
The Museum of Discovery and Science also funds a volunteer program that allows children and adults alike to give back to the community.
The IMAX theater features a 4980 square foot screen and currently plays both 2-D and 3-D movies. The five-story-high screen is the largest in South Florida. The museum also hosts many special event activities such as the annual "Food and Wine Gala" to raise money.
EcoDiscovery Center Expansion
In November 2011 the museum opened a 34,000 square foot, $25 million expansion, designed by Cambridge Seven Associates. The expansion, titled the EcoDiscovery Center, doubles the amount of exhibit space in the museum and includes exhibits called: The Everglades Airboat Adventure, Prehistoric Florida, Otters at Play, Storm Center, Florida Water Story. The new wing also houses four lifetime learning spaces and a large temporary exhibit space. The new wing opened simultaneously with a new Science Theater in the aviation exhibit gallery.
- "Museum Expansion". sun-sentinel.com. sun-sentinel.com. Retrieved 10 November 2011.
- Florida, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides, 2004, pg. 129
- With Otters, an Airboat and Hurricane-force Winds, a Museum Grows, Miami Herald Article, posted 11 November 2011