Saint Louis Science Center
The Saint Louis Science Center traces its roots to the Academy of Science of St. Louis, founded in 1856 as the first scientific organization west of the Mississippi River. In 1959, the Academy created the Museum of Science and Natural History in Clayton's Oak Knoll Park. When the Metropolitan Zoological Park & Museum District (ZMD) was formed in 1971, the Museum of Science and Natural History became a member, independent from the Academy, which continues to operate as a separate entity to this day.
The Museum then outgrew the facilities at Oak Knoll Park in the mid-1980s and, in 1984, the Museum acquired the James S. McDonnell Planetarium from the City of St. Louis. After extensive renovations, the Planetarium reopened in 1985 as the Saint Louis Science Center.
Following a $34 million expansion to construct the current main building on Oakland Avenue, the Science Center opened November 2, 1991, in its larger footprint including the five story OMNIMAXÂ Theater and a highway-spanning connection bridge. The Science Center added the EXPLORADOME in 1997 in order to provide an additional space for large traveling exhibitions. With the popularity of the EXPLORADOME, the Science Center took action to create a permanent exhibition space. In October, 2011 Boeing Hall opened dedicating 13,000 square feet of exhibit space for traveling exhibitions.
The Saint Louis Science Center was named a Smithsonian Institution Affiliate, the first in the St. Louis area in 2016. This title provides access of Smithsonian artifacts, traveling exhibits, and educational collaborations locally and nationally.
Lots of fun! Many different areas to explore. Fun for all ages. Special exhibits available at extra cost, but worth it! A couple of gift shops with friendly, attentive & informative staff. A food court area offering snacks to full meals. Bathrooms were clean enough. Laboratory area where patrons can view live animals & learn about different parts of the body. Beautiful fish tank!
There's a lot of hands on in this museum and you can purchase extras, kids play area, special exhibit, planetarium. We just went with free and enjoy 3 hours of walking through the museum, which is dated and has lots of unused space. Step outside back to the new farm exhibit, there's some fun finds outside and in the new building. Talk a walk across the highway bridge and walk into spaceship feel to the planetarium. Definitely better for elementary age and older. Free museum, pay for parking.
This is a very educational and amazing place for kids of all ages. I enjoy it just as much as my children. The entrance is free, however there are a few attractions that cost money but are very reasonable in price and worth it. We have been several times and still haven't seen everything and learn so much more everytime we go back.
This is such a neat place. If you are visiting Saint Louis, this is a place you must check out. They always have neat things going on here. The museum itself is really neat and a great place to take kids. There is a lot of interesting things for adults and a lot of interactive things for kids.
The planetarium show was excellent. The presenter was very good at adjusting the topics to something my four year old could understand and engaging her in a conversation. I hope she inspired a lifetime love of the stars but she certainly made her day!