There are two big pieces of local museum news, both excellent for all of us who like to find fun and cool things to do in the Capital District.
First, the New York State Museum will once again be open on Sundays! Yippee! Some of you may recall that the museum was had to close on Sundays a while back, in part because of budget constraints and because the research library of the section had to remain open during the week. . . well, whatever. It was a long, complicated, sad explanation. The museum will re-open for Sunday visitors beginning September 16th. Museum exhibits will be closed on Mondays instead. This is where I feel compelled to remind any of you who have not yet visited the New York State Museum that you simply must, must, must go. It’s free, people. Kids love it. Grown-ups love it. Stop whining about finding parking, blah, blah, blah. It’s not bad at all. You should totally just go and then you will smack your forehead and say to yourself, “How is it possible that it took me this long to get to this wonderful place?” And then you will write a comment here, thanking me for twisting your arm like this.
Second, have you heard that the Schenectady Museum is now miSci (pronounced “my-sigh”)? Here’s the new logo:
When I first heard the name I just chuckled a little bit, because every time I used to go into the Schenectady Museum I would say, “Oh my,” and then I would sigh, and then I would mutter to myself. I mean, it’s been fine. You can spend a morning puttering around with your children. But I’d always walk around thinking that if I were a top GE executive with piles and piles of money at my disposal and I walked into this slightly run-down, full-of-unrealized-potential museum with GE’s name plastered all over it right here in GE’s hometown, I would hand over some freakin’ cash already to make this the regional science center and fabulous showplace that it is Meant To Be.
I have no idea where the money’s coming from, but apparently they’re well on their way. Beyond the logo, miSci’s starting two big collaborations that will help turn fine into kick-butt.
They’re partnering with the Exploratorium in San Francisco to bring a bunch of cool, interactive exhibits into the museum. The first one, Seeing, will open on October 6th and continue through the beginning of June. There will be a different exhibition each year for the next five years.
Coming in early 2013, they’ll open a Challenger Learning Center. The Center will enable students to complete a two-month classroom-based STEM program of cooperative learning, problem-solving, responsible decision-making and hands-on experience that will culminate in a NASA-style simulated space flight at the center.
Hooray for museums, and hooray for the Capital District! Woot, woot!