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Films and Family Fun at the Smithsonian’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center This Winter

Films and Family Fun at the Smithsonian’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center This Winter

December 13, 2016

Meredith Wilson’s classic holiday song says, “Mom and Dad can hardly wait for school to start again.” But that does not have to be the case; students and their families can make the most of winter break at the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va. With hands-on activities and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story playing on the largest IMAX screen in northern Virginia, the museum has something to offer everyone this winter.

The Udvar-Hazy Center will be open every day except Dec. 25 from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. and will host a variety of interactive activities during winter break. In “Smithsonian TechQuest: Flying Circus,” a free alternate reality game set in the thrilling era of aviation when daring pilots zoomed across the sky and airplane designers pushed boundaries, visitors can learn about aerobatic maneuvers and forces of flight as they design their own plane. Smithsonian TechQuest is offered most Saturdays. In “Making STEM Magic,” offered every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., young visitors are introduced to engineering in a fun and creative way as they design, build and test a prototype that solves a given challenge. The theme and challenge changes every month, and in December’s “innovation” challenge, visitors learn about the Wright brothers as they build a paper copter.

The museum will also be running special hands-on activities to help kids better understand the science behind the aircraft and spacecraft on display. The popular “Rocket Lab” will be offered on Dec. 27, Dec. 28 and Dec. 29 at 10:30 a.m. and noon. In this learning lab, visitors use Newton’s Laws to develop and test rockets for stability and accuracy. The museum will also offer “Flights of Fancy” story time Dec. 27, Dec. 28 and Dec. 29 at 11 and 11:30 a.m. Designed with the youngest visitors in mind, this story time will introduce kids to the solar system and will include a reading of Mousetronaut Goes to Mars and follow-up activities and crafts.

Visitors will also have a chance to talk to curators during two “Ask an Expert” talks. Curator Russell Lee will discuss the Vought F4U-1D Corsair’s distinctive inverted gull wing design in “Why a Gull Wing for the Corsair?” Dec. 22 at 12:30 p.m., and senior curator Tom Crouch will discuss the airships in the museum’s collection, including the Goodyear Airship Control Car C-49, in “The Airships Land at the Udvar-Hazy Center” Dec. 29 at 12:30 p.m.

For a full schedule of activities this winter at the Udvar-Hazy Center, visit the National Air and Space Museum calendar of events.

The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center’s Airbus IMAX Theater will be playing Rogue One: A Star Wars Story in IMAX 3D beginning Dec. 15, with showtimes available daily through Jan. 19. With a laser digital-projection system and a screen six stories high, the Airbus Theater is a stunning way to view the film. Tickets can be purchased at the box office or online at si.edu/imax.

The museum can be reached by car and by taking Fairfax Connector Route 983. Getting to the Udvar-Hazy Center is now easier than ever for Fairfax County students because of the Fairfax Connector Student Bus Pass Program at all Fairfax County high schools and middle schools. The program allows students to ride Fairfax Connector buses for free every day from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. Visit the Fairfax Connector website for more details.

The National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is located in Chantilly, Va., near Washington Dulles International Airport. The museum building on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., is located at Sixth Street and Independence Avenue S.W. Both facilities are open daily from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25), with extended hours during peak visitation times. Admission is free, but there is a $15 fee for parking before 4 p.m. at the Udvar-Hazy Center.

 

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SI-620-2016

Media only 
Amy Stamm  
(202) 633-2392 
stamma@si.edu

Holly Williamson
(202) 633-2373 
hwilliamson@si.edu

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