Tinkering at San Francisco’s Exploratorium, new at Piers 15/17

Whew, just finished a major work project for the year, hosting our annual conference with this year all about Sustainability since our grant funding ends in just a few months. To cap off several intense days of presentations and brainstorming action plans, I arranged for all of us to attend the Exploratorium’s After Hours party Thursday with a tour from a staff member.

The place was packed, with hundreds if not a thousand of SF’s dressed-to-impressed hipsters mingling, drinking, and playing like they were 10 again. I was really struck that the new site for the Exploratorium (they just opened in April from their former home at the Palace of Fine Arts) not only elevated the beauty of the museum, but raised the appropriate age-level for attendees. This is not your kiddies hands-on science museum anymore. This is a mature place of inquiry and curiosity.

I was really too tired to do the exhibits justice, but these jumped out at me:

peel-tack-stuff-cut-fold

peel-tack-stuff-cut-fold

At the Tinkering Studio, a lovely place to use tools and imagination to make ANYTHING, there was this wallhanging with words to galvanize creativity. Look closer and each word is made of the very thing it’s sparking you to do (velcro, tack, my favorite is peel in the upper right hand corner, literally peeling off the square.)

My conference attendees also got their tourist shopping and waterfront experience that night, as it’s a brisk one-mile walk from the new Exploratorium to Fisherman’s Wharf and Pier 39. They felt the cold fog, sampled the clam chowder and sourdough, took pics of Alcatraz… a great time was had by all.

I’m already strategizing when I can return to the Exploratorium this summer, well-rested and ready to tinker!

looking from the staff level to the Tinkering Studio and the Thursday night crowd

looking from the staff level to the Tinkering Studio and the Thursday night crowd

posing with the Bay Bridge, the Golden Gate was fogged out!

posing with the Bay Bridge, the Golden Gate was fogged out!

The whole gang

The whole gang

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One thought on “Tinkering at San Francisco’s Exploratorium, new at Piers 15/17

  1. I felt the same way about the Exploratorium…it was amazing, but I was too tired to really enjoy it! I’ll have to make it back there someday. The conference was great. Good job!!

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