Back at the beginning of February while my family and I lived part time in New York, we spent a Saturday afternoon exploring The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum in New York City. The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum is a military and maritime history museum with a collection of museum ships located at Pier 86 in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood on the West Side of Manhattan. Admission costs $24 for adults, $20 for seniors, $19 for children between the ages of 7 and 17, and $12 for children between the ages of 3 and 6. However, the museum is part of the ASTC (Association of Science-Technology Centers) reciprocal network, so my family and I received free general admission. We did pay extra to visit the Space Shuttle Pavilion, which showcases the space shuttle Enterprise, the prototype NASA orbiter that paved the way for the space shuttle program.
Originally founded in 1982, The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum closed in 2006 for a two-year renovation of the USS Intrepid and facilities. The museum reopened in November 2008. The Intrepid became a National Historic Landmark in 1986 after Zachary Fisher and his brother Larry Fisher, prominent New York real estate developers, and philanthropist and journalist Michael Stern succeeded in saving the aircraft carrier from scrapping in 1978. The museum also received the USS Growler, a Grayback-class submarine, which carries the nuclear Regulus missile, by the United States Congress from the United States Navy in 1988. The museum also showcases a Concorde SST, a Lockheed A-12 supersonic reconnaissance plane, and the Space Shuttle Enterprise.
Because my son could not walk at the time and was too short anyway, my husband and daughter went through the USS Growler together while my son and I watched helicopters fly up and down the Hudson River. My daughter learned that the showers in the submarine were used to store food a lot of the time, which she found pretty funny. Although he did not go inside the submarine, my son still enjoyed looking at the huge vessel from the dock. He also enjoyed looking up at the Concorde on the far end near the river.
After my husband and daughter visited the Growler, we headed onto the Intrepid to check out the other planes and the ship. Both kids enjoyed climbing into the bridge and seeing the controls. My son also really loved looking at the two dozen authentically restored aircraft displayed on the flight deck. The gallery deck features the combat information center (CIC), squadron ready room, and marine berthing. Featuring the main indoor exhibit space, the hangar deck showcases both the hardware and humanity of Intrepid. The third deck features the restored gallery, enlisted mess, and crew berthing.
After a quick lunch inside the aircraft carrier, my family and I visited the Space Shuttle Pavilion to check out the space shuttle Enterprise and the Soyuz TMA-6 space capsule. The Enterprise went on public display at The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum in July 2012. The exhibit was closed due to damage from Hurricane Sandy but reopened in July 2013. My husband and I were both amazed at the immense size of the space shuttle. I also found the Russian Soyuz descent module fascinatingly small. I also enjoyed checking out the seventeen dynamic exhibit zones in the Space Shuttle Pavilion that feature original artifacts, photographs, audio, and films that immerse visitors in the science and history of the Enterprise and the space shuttle era.
If you are ever in the Manhattan area of New York City with a few free hours, I highly recommend visiting The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum on Pier 86. The aircraft carrier, submarine, space shuttle, and other aircraft are all amazing to view and explore. Young children will also love watching the helicopters fly overhead up and down the Hudson River. Admission to the museum is on the more expensive side, but the cost is well worth the experience. Plus, if you have a membership to another ASTC location, you get in for free. The Space Shuttle Pavilion costs extra, but my family and I thought the space shuttle and exhibits were well worth paying the little bit more. The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum is an amazing experience for the entire family!
For more information, visit The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum website.
Family Fun in New York City: The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum © 2016 Heather Johnson
The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum Sign © 2016 Heather Johnson
The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum © 2016 Heather Johnson
Propeller at The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum © 2016 Heather Johnson
USS Growler at The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum © 2016 Heather Johnson
Missile on the USS Growler at The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum © 2016 Heather Johnson
Space Shuttle Enterprise at The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum 1 © 2016 Heather Johnson
Space Shuttle Enterprise at The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum 2 © 2016 Heather Johnson
Soyuz TMA-6 Space Capsule at The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum © 2016 Heather Johnson
New Jersey from The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum 1 © 2016 Heather Johnson
New Jersey from The Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum 2 © 2016 Heather Johnson