Waterloo Region Museum unveils its newest, interactive exhibit, “Journey to Space”: hands-on learning for all ages

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The Waterloo Region Museum has an exciting new exhibit opening on Feb. 1 until April 28. Journey to Space will be a large, interactive exhibit that is designed to encourage hands-on cosmic learning for all ages.

Adele Hempel, the Museum’s curator and manager, explained that the exhibit will fill their 500-square-foot gallery with several different sections.

The first will illustrate “the dangers of space exploration,” said Hempel. Followed by “travelling to and in space,” which will be an informative guide to space-travelling vessels and rockets, as well as protection in space. These sections will include “an interview video with an engineer explaining ION engines,” Hempel added.

“The next section will be about weightlessness, so people get to actually learn about the specifics behind that,” Hempel said.

“Next is ‘living in space,’ and it does talk quite a bit about the ISS (International Space Station), which is great because of all the recent activity with our Canadian astronaut being up in space right now,” Hempel said. “It really aligns well with all of that.”

In December, Canadian Space Agency astronaut David Saint-Jacques began his voyage into space on his first mission and is the first Canadian to return to the International Space Station since 2013.

As well, Guardians of the Gallery is a museum after-hours party including beer samples, food and entertainment. This 19+ space-themed event will be the perfect place to get dressed up in an intergalactic costume and stick around for a night of dancing.

The fifth component of the exhibit will be on working in space, and the sixth will be about movement in space. “You’ll actually feel like you’re in a spaceship,” Hempel stated.

The final section of the exhibit will regard the future of human exploration in space and what we may hope to see forthcoming.

The exhibit was designed to create an authentic learning experience for patrons. Many of the sections will include audio, visual and mechanical simulations for all those who wish to attempt a space adventure.

“It opens to the public on Feb. 1. Our actual launch is for our members and invited guests on the evening previous,” Hempel stated.

The exhibit will be open for 12 weeks and admission is at no additional cost for general admission to the museum, $11 for adults, $8 for students and seniors and $5 for children.

In collaboration with this exhibit, several special events will be taking place. Breakfast with the Empire on Feb. 16 will be a space-themed breakfast which will include family-friendly interactive learning activities, scheduled on Family Day weekend.

As well, Guardians of the Gallery is a museum after-hours party including beer samples, food and entertainment. This 19+ space-themed event will be the perfect place to get dressed up in an intergalactic costume and stick around for a night of dancing.

Additional details regarding the exhibit, as well as the museum’s special events, are made available on the Waterloo Region Museum website.

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