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Michigan Science Center opens in Detroit

There are tons of hands-on exhibits, presentations and interactive games for kids—and adults—at the new Michigan Science Center, which opened its doors to the public for the first time Wednesday.

The former Detroit Science Center had been shut down since it was on the brink of financial collapse last year.

But Ann Arbor businessman and Republican political heavyweight Ron Weiser bought the science center’s assets. He’s now sold them to the Michigan Science Center, a new non-profit.

Ben Falik, who was there for the grand opening with his dad and three-year-old son, said it’s important to have a science center in Detroit’s cultural district.

“There’s so much momentum in midtown and the cultural center now,” Falik said. “We were crestfallen, like a lot of people, when it [Detroit Science Center] closed. I think we didn’t really appreciate the science center until it was gone.”

Organizers say the Michigan Science Center will have a “broader mission” that includes outreach throughout the state, and a more formal commitment to science, technology, engineering and math education.

Michigan Science Center spokesperson Kerri Budde said the center has “broadened its mission” beyond its Detroit hub.

“We’re gonna be taking our traveling outreach statewide, versus just being southeastern Michigan. So we’re partnering with folks [from] Michigan Tech University, to the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum,” Budde said.

The Science Center opensfeaturing several special exhibits, including one called “Bodies Human: Anatomy in Motion.”

It shows real human bodies preserved through a process called “plastination” in different levels of detail, and states of motion.

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Public in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
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