Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Science Academy

The California Science Academy opened it's door after it's long long renovation and we went to see it on Sunday. I was very impressed. I expected to see lots of "still under construction" signs but that wasn't the case at all. Things were polished and very well done. I loved the energy of the place. The floor plan is open and bright and the exhibits were well laid out.

The aquarium reminds me a lot of the Monteray Aquarium. The tanks were super huge but I am still in love with the moon jellies. Those things are so other worldly that I find myself calm and happy around them.

Maybe because it was opening weekend, they had lots of people of the floor showing off various live animals as well as models, bones and skins. This snake, named Balthazar, was being poked at by everyone including my little girl. See that little blue bottle on the edge near the bottom of the picture? It's a bottle of hand sanitizer for the kids after they play with the snake. I didn't take a good look at the brand but I think I want it. It's the same alcohol based hand sanitizer but it smelled so so good.

In addition to the more "grown up" exhibits, they have a little play area for the little ones. They call it the Exploration Cove. The kids had a lot of fun there. Here is a picture of Hayden working on a nature inspired puzzle.

Kira found a cozy little nook and claimed it as her own.

Guess who won the staring contest?

So we put the kids in this little enclosure to play. After a few minutes, Kira started whining, "mommy help! I can't get out". Seriously, look how huge she is compared to the little foam ring. Then there was Hayden who totally thought he could take on the ring and made a very good effort climbing out on his own. The guy can't even crawl forward and he is more physically capable than the girl. How sad.

Another major attraction was this Albino alligator. Man, does it look weird. I have another picture that is much clearer but I really don't like looking at it. It looks like it's been striped of it's skin. Very unpleasant.

We visited the gift shop on our way out and of course Kira thought she was going home with all her new alligator friends.

It was an enjoyable outing. We didn't have a chance to see their living roof and the planetarium. We'll definitely go back again. Admission is very steep ($25 per adult) but we snatched up a membership when it was still cheap. We'll have to go there lots in the next 6 months or so before our membership runs out. :-)

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