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Science Museum of Virginia, Richmond

(4/5 based on 280 reviews on the web)
The Science Museum of Virginia is a science museum located in Richmond, Virginia. Established in 1970, it is an agency of the Commonwealth of Virginia. It is housed in the former Broad Street Station, built in 1919.HistoryEarly proposalsIn 1906, the Virginia General Assembly approved funds for the construction of a simple "exhibits center" to display mineral and timber exhibits being assembled for the Jamestown Exposition of 1907. After the exposition ended, many of the items were moved to Richmond's Capitol Square. The "State Museum", as it came to be known, opened in 1910 and over the years displays of natural history specimens from a variety of State agencies were added to its collection.In 1942, the General Assembly created a study commission to consider the establishment of an official State science museum, and in 1943, that commission strongly endorsed the creation of a "Virginia Museum of Science". Unfortunately, the fiscal restraints and pressing concerns of World War II, and the recession which followed it, prevented the General Assembly from taking further action, and in 1946, the General Assembly suspended further work on a State science museum pending the identification of appropriate space and funds.By 1964, the General Assembly once again considered what to do with the "State Museum". A new study was commissioned, and once again, the establishment of a "museum of science, archeology, and natural history" was proposed, but this measure died in committee. Shortly thereafter, the museum's displays and collections in the basement of the state's Financial Building were gradually disassembled and their collections were dispersed to various State universities.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We came here super early in the morning. It's a fun place to go to especially with kids. Since we went super early there wasn't a lot of traffic to get to each exhibit. 
  • I visited the museum after not being here for 15years and was surprised by how few exhibits there were. There are a lot of children's activities, though. I was disappointed as a childless adult hoping...  more »
  • We finished our thanksgiving weekend in Richmond by seeing a little bit of downtown. Our 7 yr daughter had a blast with all of the interactive exhibits. A lot of great history to be seen and all done ...  more »
Google
  • We've been members here for a while and have found our membership to be very well worth it. We (my husband and I and 5 and 7 year old boys) have seen all of the demonstrations (cow eye, sheep heart dissections etc). And have hit all of the exhibits at least twice. We homeschool, so the exhibits offer a great way to spark interest in a particular topic or to drive home a concept in a concrete fashion. The SPEED exhibit in the main hall is worth the stop, whether you have kids or not. It's one of the coolest things to see in Richmond, right now.
  • This will be a place my children come often. I remember going as a child and being filled with wonder, and even as an adult I'm in awe of some of the exhibits. The new exhibit on speed is fantastic. and shows just how engaging and wonderful a well-thought exhibit can be. Plenty for kids and adults to learn and experience. Should be required visiting for children - inspire the next generation.
  • The science museum is always a fun place. I really enjoy going. Just renovated the first floor, and it's really cool. They have a real plane hanging from the ceiling and you can play a robot in air hockey.
  • We finally decided to become members this year and we have not been disappointed. We have two boys 7 and 9 and they both have enjoyed spending there time at the museum this Sumner. The speed exhibit is very well done and during the week when it is not so crowded there are people station to talk the kids through some of the more interesting aspects of the exhibits.
  • Beautiful building, some good science exhibits, all very kid-friendly. Some cool regular events, like Rat Basketball, are particularly noteworthy. Check out the trains and the submersible Aluminaut out back.