Museums are enthralling places. Filled with the knowledge and culture of millions of years of history, they can provide hours and hours of wonder-filled learning, and still not have a fifth of their exhibits be exhausted. One of the only ways you could make a museum experience better would be to attach the word ‘sleepover’ – at which point our jaws would drop in excitement. The idea of exploring these imposing, knowledge-filled buildings under cover of darkness is truly enthralling – and luckily, it’s an experience offered by several museums around the U.S.
Museum of Flight
Founded in 1965, the Museum of Flight in Tukwila, Washington, is a must-visit location for anyone who’s fanatic about the world of air and space. The Museum of Flight is the largest one of its kind in the world, and plays host to numerous exhibits and specimens pertaining to the history and technology of flight. The museum obviously contains numerous specimens of aircraft, including the first commercial jet airliner – the De Havilland Comet – and a Concorde 214. It also has the Challenger Learning Center, where students can go to get hands-on learning about spaceflight, and the center also runs a summer program. The museum currently runs a sleepover program in which people can go on guided tours that are also customizable. Rocket-building, a planetarium, and an interactive flight program – these are just some of the things to be found at the Museum of Flight.
Field Museum of Natural History
The Field Museum of Natural History, founded in 1893, is one of the largest natural history museums in the world. Located in Chicago, the Field Museum has a sterling reputation as an institution of natural history, boasting over 24 million specimens and a diverse range of exhibitions. The museum is also well-known for the educational and scientific programs that it runs – as well as the near-constant fieldwork of its scientists. Fans of natural history will be delighted to know that the museum runs a sleepover event, in which attendants take a trip around the museum to inspect exhibits after dark, and are treated to the 3D movie ‘Walking the T-Rex’.
Located in Philadelphia, the Penn Museum is an institution dedicated entirely to archeology and anthropology, garnering a reputation for the excellence of its Egyptian exhibit in particular. The museum is attached to the University of Pennsylvania and was founded in 1887 to host items from an expedition to the ancient city of Nippur. The Penn Museum runs a sleepover night for children aged 6 to 12 and their guardians, offering an experience guaranteed to be fun and informative. The attendees will get to go on a scavenger hunt that takes them through the museum’s various exhibits – learning from the museum while engaging in a thrilling hunt for clues through its darkened corridors.
American Museum of Natural History
Founded in 1869, the American Museum of Natural History is one of the foremost of its kind and the largest natural history museum in the world. Boasting over 33 million specimens, the museum is comprised of 28 interconnected buildings that cover an immense 2 million square feet. The museum runs a sleepover event for kids aged 6 to 16, in which they can spend the night exploring the exhibits – which consist of just about anything they could find to be interested in. The sleepover also features the watching of 3D film ‘Earthflight’ – a film offering the view of flight from the perspective of several different species of bird.