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Two New Exhibits Open at Midland Center for the Arts

Families can once again celebrate as a year-full of STEM and Art Exhibits return to the Center with the kick-off of Electricity & Simple Machines and the GMAE 50th Retrospective of Previous Winners to commemorate the Center’s 50th Anniversary Celebration Season. Having opened earlier this month, both exhibits are now on display in the Midland Center Auditorium, Little Theater and Brick lobbies and the former Saints and Sinners Lounge space.

How fitting that the first exhibit for the season will allow families to discover how electricity works and its impact on our everyday lives, when the Museum of Science & Art at Midland Center for the Arts has been without power since the historic flooding events of May 2020.

In this new interactive, hands-on exhibit, families can learn about the six simple machines: pulley, lever, wedge, screw, wheel and axle, and inclined plane; while also understanding how electrical circuits work, the difference between incandescent, LED light and plasma, and even play with a fan favorite from the Museum – the giant Light Bright Wall! Young explorers will be able to discover how simple machines help us with everyday tasks and make it easier to do them, while also delving into electrons, the light bulb, and the effects of charged particles, such as static electricity.

“In our new exhibit, families are able to safely return to the Center for fun and engaging exhibits that introduce STEM in a unique new way,” said Julie Johnson, Midland Center Director of Museums. “We have curated a series of hands-on activities for kids to discover how electricity impacts their lives with installations that were very popular in the Hall of Ideas, as well as a number of new ones that our team built in-house. A section of our early childhood area is also available with our train and Lego tables.”

In addition to the STEM exhibit, the Center is hosting the annual Greater Michigan Art Exhibition as part of the Center’s 50th Anniversary Season, highlighting 50 winning artists from the last five decades of this statewide art competition. From a wide array of artistic mediums, the exhibit is the best-of-the-best here in the State of Michigan.

“We are thrilled to bring back many of these artists that have made the GMAE so special for so many years,” said Regina Schreck, Visual Arts Curator. “To be able to commemorate the Center’s anniversary with the celebration of these Michigan artists is the best way I can imagine us honoring the Center’s rich history.”

Both exhibits are now open weekly for viewing Fridays 12 – 4 p.m., Saturdays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., and Sundays 12 – 4 p.m. The GMAE 50th Retrospective is open through November 6 throughout the lobby spaces at Midland Center for the Arts, with Electricity & Simple Machines open through November 14 in the former Lounge space off the Center’s main lobby.

The Electricity & Simple Machines and GMAE exhibits are available for $3 per person and FREE for Museum Members, which includes access to our hands-on learning lab, Spark!Lab® Smithsonian. If you are a performance ticket holder you are invited to arrive early to performances at the Center to explore parts of the GMAE exhibit before the show. Learn more about these exhibits along with other Museum events by visiting Electricity & Simple Machines is made possible through the support of Horizon Bank.

About the author

Josh Holliday

Josh Holliday

Josh Holliday is the former Director of Communications at Midland Center for the Arts. Telling the stories of artists, innovators and modern day explorers!

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