Starting on Tuesday, September 5, 2017, Illinois residents receive free Museum Entry (general admission) every weekday (Monday-Friday) the month of September at the Museum of Science and Industry (M.S.I.). This comes on the heels of two announcements about free days for Chicago Public School students. Twelve Chicago cultural institutions announced they had free general admission for C.P.S. students this week through today (Saturday, September 2, 2017): the Adler Planetarium, The Art Institute of Chicago, the Chicago History Museum, The DuSable Museum of African American History, The Field Museum, Lincoln Park Zoo, the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Museum of Science and Industry, the National Museum of Mexican Art, The National Museum of Puerto Rican Art & Culture, the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, and the John G. Shedd Aquarium. C.P.S. students need to furnish proof they are students by providing school identification cards or Spring 2017 report cards. All of the institutions are providing free general admission for one accompanying adult and some are offering free general admission for whole families. Earlier this week, the M.S.I. also announced that all Chicago Public Schools students (K-12) who attend the first day of class this school-year will receive family vouchers for three to visit the Museum of Science and Industry. The vouchers are included in the orientation packets.
Schedule of Free Days at M.S.I. for Illinois Residents in September
First Week: September 5-8
Second Week: September 11-15
Third Week: September 18-22
Fourth Week: September 25-29
Illinois residents can experience over a dozen hands-on exhibits, including Colleen Moore’s Fairy Castle, Science Storms, YOU! The Experience, Numbers in Nature: A Mirror Maze, The New U-505 Experience, and Imagining the Museum. In Science Storms, visitors can watch a twenty-foot-tall Tesla Coil shoot 1,500,000 volts of electricity to simulate lightning. They can explore a thirteen-foot-tall digital heart and a human-sized hamster wheel in YOU! The Experience. Visitors can discover mathematical patterns in the world as they navigate the labyrinth at the center of Numbers in Nature: A Mirror Maze. They can learn about the danger the German submarine fleet posed to American freighters during World War II and the exciting story of how U.S. Navy Task Group 22.3 captured the U-505 as they descend into the submarine’s underground exhibit gallery and walk around her. Another window into the past for visitors is the temporary exhibit Imagining the Museum, where they can see concept art for exhibits focused on everything from fire-fighting to time that date as far back as the 1930s.
One must be an Illinois resident to enjoy this benefit. Robot Revolution, Brick by Brick, the U-505 Submarine on-board tour, Future Energy Chicago, the Coal Mine, the WOW! Tour, Giant Dome Theater film screenings, and other special exhibits and experiences are not included in Museum Entry and require the purchase of additional, timed-entry tickets. This is an excellent opportunity for families and individuals who cannot normally afford to enter special exhibits and see Giant Dome film screenings
Figure 1 Photo Caption: J.B. Spector Caption: This is a view of the south façade of the Central Pavilion of the Museum of Science and Industry and Columbia Basin in Jackson Park on the South Side of Chicago.
Figure 2 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: Approximately 100 people built Colleen Moore’s Fairy Castle for the silent film star and financier Colleen Moore (1899-1988) between 1928 and 1935. She went on a national tour with it to raise money for children’s charities before Major Lenox Lohr (1891-1968), President of the Museum of Science and Industry, convinced her to bring it to the M.S.I.
Figure 2 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: Numbers in Nature: A Mirror Maze opened on Wednesday, October 8, 2014. The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia is the first museum to host a traveling version of this math exhibit, A Mirror Maze: Numbers in Nature. It opened on Wednesday, May 17, 2017 and runs through Monday, September 4, 2017.
Figure 3 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: The most popular feature of the Science Storms physics exhibit is a forty-foot-tall swirling vortex, a tornado simulation.
Figure 4 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: This is the U-505 inside the subterranean 35,000-square-foot McCormick Tribune Foundation Exhibition Hall. The New U-505 Experience opened on June 5, 2005.
Figure 5 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: YOU! The Experience opened on the North Balcony (overlooking Rosenwald Court) in the Museum of Science and Industry’s Central Pavilion in October of 2009.
Figure 6 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: Students choose different power sources to fuel Chicago as they take on the role of power engineers in the “Future Power” game, part of the Future Energy Chicago exhibit at the M.S.I. The preview period for this exhibit began on Wednesday, September 18, 2013.
Figure 7 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: This is a rendering of the proposed Transportation Zone in the East Court of the Central Pavilion of the Museum of Science and Industry. The rendering can be currently seen in the exhibit Imagining the Museum. Note that, as built, the Burlington Zephyr is actually between the two wings of the underground garage and is accessible from the Entry Hall. The Great Train Story sits where the Burlington Zephyr can be seen in this rendering. Also, the Air Traffic Control Tower seen here was not built.
Figure 8 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: The 1.3-meter-tall CHARLI, developed to move and be shaped like humans, can walk in all directions, turn, and kick. The M.S.I. brought back its national touring exhibit Robot Revolution, which re-opened on Thursday, May 11, 2017. It will run through Sunday, February 4, 2018.
Figure 9 Photo Credit: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry Caption: LEGO® Certified Professional Adam Reed Tucker’s model of the Golden Gate Bridge in the exhibit is 60’ long, took 215 hours to design, took 260 hours to build, and is comprised of 64,500 bricks. Brick by Brick has been extended through Sunday, January, 7, 2018.
Starting on Tuesday, September 5, 2017, the Museum of Science and Industry will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Until Labor Day (Monday, September 4, 2017), the M.S.I. will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. [During peak periods, the M.S.I. is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Sunday, September 24, 2017, the M.S.I. will be open from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.] The Museum of Science and Industry is located in the northeast corner of Jackson Park in the neighborhood of Hyde Park on the South Side of Chicago. It stands on 57th Street at the intersection with Lake Shore Drive. The address is 5700 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60637. The phone number is (773) 684-1414.