At A Glance
Location: 5050 Oakland Ave, St. Louis, MO, 63110
Hours: Hours vary – Closed Tuesday & Wednesday
The Saint Louis Science Center’s history began in 1963 with the founding of a city planetarium. Although the planning and funding for the first structure began in 1955, officials spent two full years surveying for the best location. The first site that was considered was near the Jefferson Memorial Building on the northern side of Forest Park, but these plans were scrapped due to subdivision restrictions. The proposed location was then changed to the southern end of the park, where the old mounted police station used to sit before it was demolished in 1960.
The original plan from the beginning was to build a natural history museum, planetarium, and science museum. Yet, the area was only home to the planetarium until 1972, when funding began going to the Museum of Science and Natural History from the Metropolitan Zoological Park and Museum District, which was located in Oak Knoll Park, near Clayton, during this time.
The museum bought the Planetarium in 1983 and closed it for remodeling. The site reopened as The Saint Louis Science Center in July 1985, and has been thriving and growing since. Today, the St. Louis Science Center is a collection of buildings located on the southeastern corner of Forest Park which includes the planetarium and science museum. The complex is home to over 750 exhibits, and with an area of 300,000 sq. ft. it’s one of the largest of its type in the U.S.
What to Expect at Saint Louis Science Center
The Saint Louis Science Center is a wonderful experience for people of all ages and is a great way to spend a few hours or an entire day. And let’s face it, with over 750 exhibits, plus the planetarium and OMNIMAX Theater, that’s a lot of things to see and do!
The best part of the St. Louis Science Center is how many hands-on exhibits they have, which are fun and an excellent way for children to learn about science. When it comes to a science museum, few others in the country even begin to compare to this one.
Once inside the Science Center you’ll be lost in awe experiencing the following areas:
- Life-sized dinosaurs
- Artifacts of Wonder
- Ecology & Environment
- King Tut
- Mission: Mars
- Experience Energy
- Experience an Earthquake
- Life Science
- Virtual Reality
- Speed checks over Highway 64
- And much, much more.
Just don’t forget to wear comfortable shoes, at just over 300,000 square feet, the Saint Louis Science Center does not have a shortage of attractions. And trust me, you don’t want to miss any of them!
The amount of time it takes for you to go through the St. Louis Science Center depends on your level of interest, and how many of the exhibits you plan to see. Keep in mind that this science museum has over 750 exhibits, as well as a planetarium and the OMNIMAX Theater. So, you could go through it in as little as 30 to 45 minutes, or spend 2-3 solid hours enjoying everything.
Yes! The St. Louis Science Center does a great job making science learning fun for both adults and children. In fact, there are some exhibits that are more geared toward older audiences, while some are made for kids.
The St. Louis Science Center offers free admission. The only cost associated with this attraction is parking, which costs $15 in the lot. Some prefer to park in Forest Park or other nearby areas for free, and then walk, so it’s all up to you.