The array of hands-on exhibits will have you playing scientist or engineer at this museum known for its innovative interactive displays.
With five exhibition halls, an Omnimax theater and a genuine navy submarine, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, or OMSI, is geared towards making science fun and fascinating for all ages.
See what you will look like in 25 years’ time in the Life Sciences hall, where you can watch a picture of yourself slowly age. In the Turbine Hall, build a bridge or boat in the Engineer It section. Try your hand at experiments in the Chemical Lab, where you can mix real chemicals and observe the results.
Parents should take advantage of the Science Playground where children can play safely in the interactive learning environment, while adults can talk with scientists in the Discovery Lab. Learn more about studies in human development, and maybe your own family dynamics, by conversing with experts in the field. Researchers attend the lab on selected days.
For a spot of virtual star gazing head to the Planetarium, where an impressive light and laser show depicts the heavens in a number of daily shows. On a pier adjacent to the museum you will find the USS Blueback, a decommissioned fast-attack submarine that served 31 years in the U.S. Navy, and also appeared in the film The Hunt for Red October. Both attractions incur an extra charge on top of the admission fee.
Visit the Omnimax theater for 3-D graphics on a five-story-high screen. To refuel, there’s a waterfront café with a menu based on seasonal, locally sourced food. OMSI is closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Allow at least three to four hours for your visit.