With a foundation of aviation history, the Museum is also a hub of news and dialogue with leaders in the emerging field of private spaceflight ventures. The Museum’s aviation and space library and archives are the largest on the West Coast. More than 150,000 individuals are served annually by the Museum’s onsite and outreach educational programs. The Museum of Flight is accredited by the American Association of Museums, and is an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution.
The Museum of Flight’s ambitious four-year campaign has successfully exceeded its goal. Now with a stronger financial foundation, the Museum will continue with equally bold plans in education and service to the community. As the Pacific Northwest evolves as not only a leader in aviation and but in spaceflight too, the Museum will remain one of the world’s great institutions of aviation history while becoming an important center for the living history of new space ventures.
The campaign’s goal of $77 million-the largest fundraising target in the Museum’s history- was reached through the commitment and generosity of a passionate community of donors. While the success of this campaign has enabled the Museum to physically double in size and continue its investment in operational growth, the greatest impact of the campaign will be felt by the community as the Museum continues to invest in ambitious and diverse educational offerings for students of all ages.
The Museum’s vision is to be the foremost educational air and space museum in the world. Generations of young learners have visited the Museum since its inception, and their participation grows yearly. 2016 welcomed a record 183,000+ learners, and the Museum’s outreach programs topped 5,000. The campaign has recently allowed significant leaps in the Museum’s STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education programs, including the establishment of the Boeing Academy for STEM Learning. Generous donor investments have resulted in new and refined program offerings with a larger network of traditional and nontraditional education partners. With this push, the Museum worked with other regional museums to expand science learning to fifth graders in Highline Public Schools (the participating students scored significantly higher on state assessments than their peers in similar schools and districts).
Early in 2016 the Museum launched Connections, a new membership program designed to make it easier for students throughout the region and state to learn about and take advantage of STEM opportunities. During fall of last year, the Museum collaborated with one of the world’s largest pilot organizations, AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association), to provide professional development to over 200 educators across the country. This was part of an initiative to expand aviation education in high schools and inspire students to pursue aviation-related STEM careers.
As 2016 drew to a close, the Museum strengthened its involvement in Seattle’s growing commercial space industry by hosting International Space University- an organization providing education for professionals interested in pursuing careers in space science, engineering and policy. ISU was an ideal complement to the Museum’s own three-day symposium, SpaceFest, held the same week.
Museum President and CEO Doug King said, “The Inspiration Begins Here! Campaign was the most comprehensive effort to ensure our sustainability, preserve our history, enhance our visitor experience and most importantly inspire the next generation of astronauts, pilots and engineers. From establishing new, long range educational offerings and innovative public programs to launching a permanent Apollo exhibit, we are eager to continue and grow this momentum in 2017 and beyond.”
About the The Museum of Flight
Founded in 1965, the independent, nonprofit Museum of Flight is one of the largest air and space museums in the world, serving more than 560,000 visitors annually. The Museum’s collection includes more than 160 historically significant airplanes and spacecraft, from the first fighter plane (1914) to today’s 787 Dreamliner. Attractions at the 20-acre, 5-building Seattle campus include the original Boeing Company factory, and the only full-scale NASA Space Shuttle Trainer.
The Museum of Flight is located at 9404 E. Marginal Way S., Seattle, Exit 158 off Interstate 5 on Boeing Field halfway between downtown Seattle and Sea-Tac Airport. The Museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Museum admission for adults is $23.00 on-site and $21.00 online. Youth 5 through 17 are $14.00 on-site and $13 online, youth 4 and under are free. Seniors 65 and over $19 on-site and $18 online. Groups of ten or more: $21.00 per adult, $13.00 per youth, Thanks to Wells Fargo, on the first Thursday of every month, admission is free from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. And parking is always free. There is a full lunch menu café in the Museum and a limited menu café in the Aviation Pavilion, both operated by McCormick & Schmick’s. For general Museum information, please call 206-764-5720 or visit www.museumofflight.org