The South Florida Science Center & Aquarium moved at lighting speed while preparing to launch its new “Hall of Heroes” exhibit, which opened to the public earlier than the expected Sept. 20 date.
The Science Center, located at 4801 Dreher Trail North in West Palm Beach, opened the superhero-themed exhibit on Sunday, Sept. 15, and it will remain on view until next April.
The Hall of Heroes is more than statues and posters. The highly interactive displays take patrons through the early history of comic book and radio series, with memorabilia spanning from the times of Dick Tracy and Buck Rogers to the modern versions of Iron Man and Wonder Woman.
The rotating exhibit gives both adults and kids the chance to test their skills, such as balance, agility, strength and speed, against the heroes in the movies.
“Superheroes are all the rage right now, from blockbuster movies and beyond. At the Science Center, we aim to host exhibits that are relevant to current cultural interests while keeping science education at the heart of the message,” Director of Marketing Melinda Grenz said. “Hall of Heroes is a perfect mix of superhero history, culture and, of course, the science behind their powers, allowing visitors to physically step into their world like never before. Our mission is to open every mind to science, including superhero and comic book lovers of all ages.”
Guests have the opportunity to discover their own superpowers as they interact with exhibits that sort participants into five disciplines: Powers of the Body, Powers of the Mind, Mastery, Gadgets and the Elements. From reflexes to grip strength, there are activities appropriate for toddlers to seniors.
“The interactive displays throughout the exhibit are awesome,” Grenz said. “Not only can you get up close with life-size statues of the superheroes themselves, but you can physically test your powers against theirs and see how you match up. It’s a giant superhero obstacle course!”
Grenz is particularly proud of one recent addition to the collection. “We are the first location to host the Wonder Woman addition,” Grenz said. “She majestically stands guard at the entrance of the exhibit — girl power!”
The Science Center also adapted special programs to the exhibit, including a Superhero Nights at the Museum on Friday, Sept. 27 from 6 to 9 p.m., and a Superhero Family Sleepover on Friday, Nov. 15.
The Science Center has been busy this year, opening a new permanent exhibit called “Journey Through the Human Brain” in March. The exhibit includes a 2,500-square-foot area containing 30 interactive stations.
Other exhibits at the Science Center include the Fischer Family Science Trail, the 18-hole mini golf Conservation Course and the Aquariums of the Atlantic. Longtime favorites for visitors, the Marvin Dekelboum Planetarium and children’s Discovery Center are also popular.
“In our mission to open every mind to science, we strive through our exhibits to make sure learning is fun,” said Kate Arrizza, CEO of the Science Center. “Hall of Heroes is the perfect way to get kids to find out more about the physics and chemistry behind superpowers, like thermodynamics and X-ray vision, as well as the history behind the heroes. Science and imagination go together to help us advance and shape our future.”
The South Florida Science Center & Aquarium is open Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about the special programs and exhibits, call (561) 832-1988 or visit www.sfsciencecenter.org.