Last weekend, Andrew, Willow, and I went into Philadelphia to see the Pirates Exhibit at the Franklin Institute. We had wanted to save on gas and take the SEPTA train into Philly, but the afternoon before the SEPTA police went on strike, and trust me - you don't want to riding SEPTA without the police on board.
Unfortunately, cameras were verboten in the exhibit itself (and I am completely peeved at the people who were flaunting that rule and taking pictures anyway) so the pictures I took outside the museum will have to suffice. I love how they laid the pirate's map on the steps of the Franklin Institute. They did something similar with the King Tut exhibit last year and it has a neat visual effect. If you are on the steps looking down, you can't see the map at all.
Here's a pic of the huge Ben Franklin statue inside. We saw the Ben Franklin re-enactor while in the museum and Willow said he winked at her. I said, "Well, Ben always did have a thing for the ladies..."
A few days later I accompanied Willow and her summer camp to the Maryland Science Center in Baltimore. I have to say, Baltimore is one of my favourite places to visit within driving distance of our house. It reminds me so much of Victoria, BC - and I have had so much fun there the last two years going to Stitches East with my girlfriends. Just look at the harbour:
Even before we entered the museum itself there were people out front conducting experiments for the kids... like how to burn things with a magnifying glass:
Yeah... maybe that isn't such a hot idea (Ha ha!)
It was interesting to see these two science museums within such a short time period so I could compare the two. Andrew is a bit hurt at how impressed I was at the Maryland Science Center - it had a lot more hands-on areas for the kids, like this one where Willow is uncovering dinosaur bones:
And a close-up of the T-Rex skeleton:
I especially liked the kinetics lab at the Maryland Science Center - and let's face it - Baltimore has beaten Philly's location hands down. Less than five minutes away from the Maryland Science Center you have a submarine to explore, the Baltimore Aquarium, and an 18th century ship to board. I'm a winner either way - we purchased a family membership at the Franklin Institute, and due to a lovely reciprocal relationship to other science museums, it gets us into the Maryland Science Center free as well!
And a trip to any science museum wouldn't be complete without a child's introduction to the most scientific candy of all, Pop Rocks:
Her verdict? Tasty, but unnerving.