‘Birthday Bonanza’ set for Saturday, Oct. 17
NASHVILLE, Oct. 13, 2015—It’s hard to believe there was a time when parents could purchase a membership to a local cultural institution for only 25 cents per child. But when the Adventure Science Center—originally the Children’s Museum of Nashville—first opened its doors in October 1945, that was a reality!
As World War II was coming to a close, Sgt. John Ripley Forbes’s vision and enthusiasm to create a children’s museum in Nashville came to fruition. Seventy years later, the Science Center continues to amaze, challenge and educate its inquisitive visitors with hands-on learning experiences and engaging exhibits.
Visitors on Saturday, Oct. 17, will have a chance to celebrate during the Science Center’s 70th Birthday Bonanza, which will include cake, liquid nitrogen ice cream, balloon art, giveaways and special birthday-themed science demonstrations from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Included with general admission.
More information is available at www.adventuresci.org/70thbirthday.
“This institution has had an enormous impact on the 11 million visitors who have come through our doors over the course of 70 years,” said Susan Duvenhage, president and CEO. “We catch glimpses of it every day when we see students, teachers and families react in amazement at what they’re learning or experiencing here.
“Childhood visits to the Science Center have inspired many young people to become scientists, engineers, physicians, chemists, computer scientists, teachers and much more. And audiences around the country and around the world have seen shows produced by the Sudekum Planetarium. It’s a proud legacy, and we’re excited to commemorate it this Saturday,” Duvenhage said.
70th Birthday Bonanza activities:
· The (Static) Electric Slide – Explore static electricity in the style of everyone’s favorite science enthusiast from the 50s and 60s with a Van de Graaff generator, balloons and more!
· Take a Breather – Let the Science Center’s wild man in a bowtie teach you how to make your own “air-zooka” and learn how to use it to blow out candles and make smoke rings.
· Candle Combustion – Ever been fooled by trick candles? Ever seen a candle with a colored flame? Discover the science behind these fun birthday tricks and never be fooled again!
· Bernoulli Blowout! – Bernoulli’s principle helps explain how an aircraft can achieve lift because of the shape of the wings, but it can also apply to birthdays. Join in on the fun by crafting a blower to take home!
A birthday celebration would be woefully incomplete without sweet treats, so Adventure Science Center will begin serving up birthday cake and liquid nitrogen ice cream at noon, while supplies last. Guests can grab some cake, see photos from the 70-year history, sign a birthday card, and more!
As part of the celebration, the Science Center is asking the public to send pictures of their visits throughout the years to be included in a slideshow during the Birthday Bonanza event and posted to its Facebook page. To submit images, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Submissions will be accepted through Thursday, Oct. 15.
Event activities subject to change.
In honor of the 70th birthday, Adventure Science Center members, donors and visitors are helping to replace one of the institution’s treasured exhibits. The aging, water-based vortex will be updated with a swirling air and vapor exhibit that visitors can study and manipulate. For more information, visit www.adventuresci.org/donate70.
“In the 1940s our visitors came to us in Woodies, today they come to us in electric and hybrid cars. By the time of our 75th, it could very well be self-driving cars. As technology changes and shapes our experiences, we will continue inspiring the next generation of scientists, technology pioneers, engineers and innovators that will change the world. We’re thrilled to share this milestone with our members and visitors—young and old—who created lasting memories and dreamed big dreams with us along the way,” Duvenhage added.
More about Adventure Science Center’s history
In the early days, the Museum was located on 2nd Avenue South in the old University of Nashville building downtown.
As a founding trustee, Anthony “Tony” Sudekum shared the Museum’s mission to inspire children to learn and explore the world around them. After his death in 1946, his widow, Mrs. Nettie Elizabeth Sudekum, gave the Museum $5,000 in his memory to build a dome and install a Spitz star projector. At that time, it was the only planetarium in Tennessee and one of only three in the South.
In 1974, the Museum moved to its current location, adjacent to Fort Negley. And in the fall of 1975, the Museum’s name changed to Cumberland Museum and Science Center. The Museum expanded in 1986 and again in 2008, along with two more name changes in between (Cumberland Museums and Adventure Science Center).
Today the Science Center includes 44,000 square feet of exhibit space and nearly 175 hands-on exhibits focused on biology, physics, visual perception, listening, mind, air and space, energy and earth science. The Sudekum Planetarium features state-of-the-art digital projection, hybrid optical star projector, and 16,000 watts of surround sound.
For more history, visit www.adventuresci.org/70years.
About Adventure Science Center
For 70 years, Adventure Science Center has brought science to life for students, teachers and families in Middle Tennessee, Southern Kentucky, Northern Alabama and beyond. The Center offers hands-on, interactive exhibits and engaging programs that encourage visitors of all ages to explore how science is relevant in their lives. Adventure Science Center encourages imagination and curiosity in a fun, dynamic learning environment. It is located at 800 Fort Negley Blvd. in Nashville. For more information, call (615) 862-5160 or visit www.adventuresci.org.