I’ve driven by the Adventure Science Center here in Nashville thousands of times. It’s one of those places I’ve always meant to check out, but just never got around to it – either it was raining out and I told myself it’d be too crowded, or the weather was too nice and who wants to be inside on a gorgeous day?
Now that we’ve finally been, I’ll tell you this: Rain or shine, we’ll be making this a regular stop on our weekend schedule. The place is awesome.
My kids are really young at 3 and not-even-1, but they both still had a blast. At $12/person for adult admission, my husband made sure to point out that he was completely justified in getting in on the fun as well. It’s not necessarily a cheap outing for a family of four, but the annual membership structure seems to make sense if you plan on visiting at least three times a year (depending on your family’s size).
We spent way too much time on the first floor, not having any idea of the utter coolness that awaited us on higher levels. I recommend you skip right past the robotics and head on up to the second level on you first visit. This is where the magic happens, the exception being if you have a young toddler, and then the large padded cushions in the 6 and under area provide a welcome source of entertainment.
Depending on the age and interests of your children, there’s a little bit of something for everyone – especially for space adventurers. The planetarium isn’t included in your admission price, but with featured movies and laser shows, it’s a must-see for those with older kids in tow and a little extra time on your hands.
The Adventure Tower is the star of the Adventure Science Center and for very good reason. It’s simply amazing, once you’re able to convince yourself that the structural integrity probably rivals that of the best engineered buildings in the world and to just relax and enjoy. It’s seriously THE indoor playground to end all playgrounds. There’s no rival out there that I’m aware of. The “adult” staircases are a tiny bit narrow and winding, but I was able to easily navigate them with a Baby Bjorn strapped to the front of me.
If you have really young kids, I don’t know that I’d let them venture all the way to the top without you, only because you can’t easily watch them from below. On slow days this is probably ok, but when there are a lot of “big kids” running around, there’s some potential for tumbles and getting stuck in places.
That said, my three year old easily navigated her way up to the top without much assistance so physically it’s not a tough challenge. And let me be clear: the child was in hog heaven. If you have a climber on your hands, set them loose and watch them wear themselves out in no time.
The other sections of the center were equally entertaining, if just for the visual appeal and constant stimulation of the senses. Bodyquest is visually stunning and could keep kids (and adults) of all ages busy for hours.
With camps, story times, a bustling cafe and private party opportunities, the Adventure Science Center has a lot to offer our local families. I’m now a little embarrassed that we’d never before taken the time to visit, but now we know what a gem this place is – we hope you’ll get out and discover it soon, too!
The Science Center is open during the following times:
10:00 am – 5:00 pm
12:30 pm – 5:30 pm
Sudekum Planetarium is closed on Mondays.
Find all the visitor information you need on the Adventure Science Center’s official website.