Hands On! Museum will be relocating to the Gray Fossil Site and re-opening as the Hands On! Discovery Center on June 14th. The current downtown location will close on May 19th. The project will re-invent the space at the Gray Fossil Site Museum and become an all ages Discovery Center dedicated to STEM education and serving as a premier family destination and tourism attraction.
Hands On! Museum entered into a collaborative agreement with ETSU in 2016 to manage the day-to-day museum operations at the Gray Fossil Site Museum with the goal of relocating there entirely by the end of this year. Since then, Hands On! has worked with ETSU to expand the educational program offering and continued to educate visitors on the fossils found at the site while also completing a master plan for new exhibit content. The new Hands On! Discovery Center is the first and only all-ages science museum in the region and is a unique blend of natural history, interactive science exhibits, and art.
“Opening the Hands On! Discovery Center represents incredible vision and foresight from the museum’s Board of Directors, leadership at ETSU, and community leaders,” said Andy Marquart, Executive Director. “The Hands On! Discovery Center will be a top destination for families, a regional community centerpiece, and an invaluable learning asset for students and teachers for the foreseeable future”
The Board of Directors of Hands On! have been searching for a more suitable location for the museum for over two decades. The new Hands On! Discovery Center will feature brand-new state of the art exhibits combined with classic favorites from the current location. There will be over 12,000 additional square feet of interactive space at the museum. Two additional feature exhibit spaces will come online later this year including a children’s pollinator garden and a three-story climber dedicated to the discoveries at the fossil site.