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Free Wi-Fi Available
120 W. Kellogg Boulevard, St. Paul, MN 55102
(651) 221-9444
Admission: $29.95
Ticket prices are subject to change.
Scroll to the bottom for a ticket link
Concessions Available
Hours of Operation:
Mon. Closed
Tue. 10:00 AM – 05:00 PM
Wed. 10:00 AM – 05:00 PM
Thu. 10:00 AM – 05:00 PM
Fri. 10:00 AM – 08:00 PM
Sat. 10:00 AM – 08:00 PM
Sun. 10:00 AM – 05:00 PM
Advanced reservations are recommended and hours are subject to change.
Details:

Located in St. Paul between the Mississippi River and Kellogg Boulevard, the Science Museum of Minnesota (“SMM”) welcomes all visitors to explore and interact with the world of science–all different kinds of science: Biology, Chemistry, Archaeology, Sociology, Paleontology, Environmentology, all -Ology you can think of.  It’s all there for you to discover in this BIG museum. And it is big! According to the Science Museum’s website they encompass 8.5 acres of exhibits!

Articles Related to SMM

Anytime Free Online Resources from the Science Museum

Although SMM is a really cool museum, you don’t have to wait to start learning. SMM provides a lot of free, fun extras that families can grab online anytime. These freebies include:

The Science is Learning – Virtual Tookit

Find hands-on activities to encourage science at home, like printable puzzles and coloring sheets, experiments and DIY activities.

Omnitheater Extras

Families can dig a little deeper into the topics of the current movies before or after a screening. Find interviews, videos, extra facts and more.

Science for All

Dig deeper into SMM’s permanent exhibit, RACE: Are We So Different? with videos that explore the topic and conversation starters for around the dinner table, including the 10-minute drama, The Idea.

Education Resources

Aimed at educators, families can also view use materials created to provide resources for learning, such as online lessons and learn from home ideas.

Gianna’s Review of the Science Museum of Minnesota

When Family Fun Twin Cities was offered the opportunity to enjoy the museum, its featured exhibits, and Omnitheatre presentation, the Kordatzky family made a day of it.  We spent the entire day at the museum and still missed an entire floor. My husband stated, “Well, then, you’ve got something to come back and see.”

The day we visited, the Science Museum wasn’t crammed full of patrons; it was bustling but very manageable. We arrived when the museum opened (9:30 am) and stayed until 3:30. In those six hours, we got a little taste of everything. And we dragged ourselves out exhausted and happy because we all had fun. Every single one of us!

preschool party

Science Museum Of Minnesota Omnitheatre

Our Family Vacation Day started in the Omnitheatre. During Museum hours, the film is shown every hour on the hour.  We decided on the 10:00 am show.  As they lowered the screen, the kids were in awe. When the movie started, Chris and I were suddenly reminded that it’s helpful to sit farther in the back. It makes it easier to see the whole screen, but this had no effect on the kids.  They were entranced. Honestly, I cannot really tell you much about the movie itself.  It was narrated and followed a story line, but I was too involved with the whole experience (ie trying to keep myself from feeling nauseated). Our kids were encompassed by the film.  It was the boys’ favorite part of the whole day. When I picked up the tickets, I asked them if we could leave the theatre if the kids were not doing well. I was assured that I could.  But it turned out to be unnecessary. Which completely shocked me.  I thought two active boys, 3 and 5, would not make it through, but I guess they showed me.

“I’m flying!” came a little 3-year-old voice as the movie panned over the trees to the Mayan ruins.\

View of seating Omnitheater at the Science Museum of Minnesota
View of seating in the Omnitheater at the Science Museum of Minnesota

Bonus Fun: Science Museum of Minnesota Omnifest

This is one of our favorite our favorite Science Museum of Minnesota events. During the cold dark days of winter (some time in January – March), the science museum usually offers its magnificent Omnifest.  If there is ever a great time to have a Science Museum membership its during Omnifest because they bring out a host of omnitheater films and members can watch for FREE. Watch for it again in the first quarter of 2022!

Science Museum Of Minnesota Hands-On Exhibits

Following the Film, we explored the exhibit that went with the film. The first part of the exhibit is another short film.  No more than 5 minutes, but after seeing the movie, I did not need another educational movie. However, it was really interesting to explore hands on what we had just seen.

Then, we wandered into the Collectors’ Corner (where kids can trade their artifacts and knowledge for points to earn other natural items) and ultimately to the mummy. We learned all about mummification. I think this was the first time I have ever been able to take a good long look at this guy.  In the past, I have always been a little disgusted. A staff member was placed next to the mummy to explain mummification and answer any questions.

Science Musuem

We decided to have lunch in the museum’s cafeteria (great mac and cheese, not so great pizza). Be sure to check out the Seismofon above your heads when eating in the cafeteria. It chimes whenever there is seismic activity! Cool and a little scary.

After lunch we explored the numerous hands-on exhibits.

  • Dinosaur and Fossils Gallery: actual dinosaur skeletons–triceratops, allosaurus, camptosaurus, diplodocus, as well as many other fossils.
  • Experiment Gallery: play with light, wind, water pressure, waves, and watch how a tornado forms. Endless possibilities for hands-on fun here!
  • Math Moves:  play with weights and graphs and ratios and proportion
  • Big Back Yard:  Since Gianna originally published this article, the Big Back Yard has permanently closed, but see our Birthday Party section below. SMM now offers outside birthday parties in the summer.
  • Minnesota River Gallery: take in the pride of Minnesota–the Mississippi River with an actual tugboat mounted on the top of the museum, interactive displays, and a live news show put on by you!
  • Science Live Theatre: watch short presentations combining “theater” with science.  We watched a “funny” lady demonstrate the triangle of fire: heat, oxygen, and fuel.

We completely missed the Human Body Gallery (where you can find Egyptian mummies) and the Cell Lab. They looked fascinating with blood pumping above our heads and a large-sized display of the chambers of the heart.  But alas, it will have to wait for next time.

Gianna’s Top 3 SMM Favorites

1. The Omnitheatre Experience

I thought everyone would be a bit nervous by this gigantic and odd theatre, but I was clearly wrong. If a 3-year-old will quietly sit through a 45 minute documentary about Maya, you know they’re doing something right.

2. The Musical Stairs

The kids were halfway done the stairs before I realized what I was hearing.  So back up the stairs we ran.  Then, down.  Then, up. Down and up and down. Chris stood on the steps and swung his foot back and forth without touching the stairs to make the music. Everyone loves when Daddy is being funny.

3. The Sound Lights

When we ran under these lights, we heard piano notes and sounds of nature. Maybe there were more sounds, but we didn’t encounter them. Go enjoy some time with your family!  It’s a great way to beat the heat and spend some great time together as a family!  It worked well for us!


Science Museum Of Minnesota “Virtual Field Trips” for Families

The museum staff have pulled together some fun online options to keep our families learning virtually from home. Take advantage of their Science Is Learning toolkit page to learn about diatom, archeology and dinosaurs. Bigger kids may enjoy reading articles on the Learn page. Either way, you could take “virtual field trips” on your favorite subjects and then culminate the learning with a visit to the museum.

Science Museum Of Minnesota Summer Camps

Each summer the Science Museum offers a host of week-long summer camps with various science-y themes. This popular program is known to sell out. I know families who use this program in place of summer daycare, signing up for different programs throughout the summer. We include annual details here: Twin Cities Summer Camps: Science & Tech Camps.

color boats at camp

Birthday Parties at SMM

The Science Museum traditionally offers full-service birthday parties with packages that include admission to the museum for all guests, a private room, a hands-on science activity, decorations and set up & clean up. For an extra fee, the museum will also provide a cake. In the summer of 2018, the museum added outdoor birthday parties that include games and activities outside. Kids of all ages will love celebrating science in the sun with friends before exploring the museum! Birthday Parties are currently on hold, but check back later. We believe they will be offered again, soon.

Science Museum Of Minnesota Admission Prices

Prices are subject to change but, as of September 2022, general admission is as follows:

  • Ages 18+: $29.95
  • Ages 4-17: $19.95
  • Children under 4 are FREE.

Omnitheatre Tickets are extra:

  • General Admission $9.95

Science Museum Discounts

  1. Family Membership: The best anyone discount to the Science Museum is membership. A family can make a day at this great science museum and will probably still miss some cool exhibits in the 10,000-square foot building. You will want to come back again and again. Members get FREE admission, FREE Omnitheatre admission (one per visit), advanced notice of special events, discounted parking and a bonus of FREE admission to other museums when traveling. Sometimes local museums offer a membership or admission discount if you pull out your Science Museum membership card. A Explorer+ Membership (the new name for a household membership) is $149/year, which breaks down to less than $12.50/month. If you are a teacher, your family can also get a discount on membership.
  2. Limited Income Family Memberships: If you qualify for the limited income discount (Adventurer Membership), which is available to families using one or more of several government programs (including WIC and MA), then a family membership is only $15/year.
  3. Your College Student Discount Ideas: There is no Science Museum Of Minnesota Student Discount, but  a nanny or personal care attendant, can sign up for a “Nanny Card” to get discounted admission when accompanying charges. An Explorer Membershiop (f/k/a Dual Membership) ($95/year) would make a nice gift for any student on your list. They then can visit the Science Museum and Omnitheatre and bring a friend for FREE all year long.
  4. GreatTix – Limited Income Discount for single tickets.  If you don’t plan to visit more than once in a year, then you can purchase single limited income tickets at $3/entrance ticket and $3/omnitheatre ticket.  Note, however, that a family of four would only need to visit twice in a year to pay for the full-year discount.

Science Museum of Minnesota Free Admission:

Parts of the Science Museum are always Free to visit. This is not a bad idea if you just want a very short visit with a small child – maybe mixed with a visit to Saint Paul Public Library’s George Latimer Central Library or a Sundays at Landmark Center.

  1. The Museum’s Lobby is Free to Visit and houses an impressive Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton, touchable t-rex tooth and jaw and an interactive ball launcher and air cannon. The gift shop is also located here.
  2. The Mississippi River Visitor Center is located just inside the lobby of SMM. Watch videos, read books and enjoy the interactive exhibits about the Mississippi River. You can also join the Junior Ranger program or turn in your booklets here.
  3. Gianna’s favorite, The Musical Stairs, are outside the exhibit area and do not require a ticket, neither do the musical pools of lights outside the elevators from the parking garage.

If you are already in the area with your tot or pre-k child, these free exhibits would be plenty to keep their interest for a short visit.

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