SEVEN Reasons to Add the Science Mill to YOUR Family's Summer Bucket List
It’s been just about a year since our family made the short trip to Johnson City to experience the Science Mill for the first time…and since then, this unique and super fun children’s STEM museum (housed inside of a historic former feed mill and cotton gin) has added a whole slew of new exhibits, an Aquaponics Greenhouse, a third African Spurred Tortoise, and a brand new 3D movie, to boot. So today, we’re talking about SEVEN reasons YOU should add the Science Mill to your family’s summer bucket list this year!
1) Aquaponics, y’all…It’s really cool.
And in case you’re like me and asking yourself, “What the heck is an Aquaponics Greenhouse?”, here’s a little explanation:
“In this new experience, found only at the Science Mill, visitors will walk into a working aquaponics system where they can see how fish, plants and microbes work together to create healthy food. They will discover how tilapia, prawns, koi and snapping turtles provide the food to grow fruit, vegetables and tropical plants in vertical growing tubes, floating rafts and in a giant living wall.” (source)
This short video from Studio 512 explains it all pretty well:
Really cool, right? And now you kind of want to try making an aquaponics system of your own? You can totally DO THAT and the Science Mill has included step-by-step instructions HERE.
2) Exhibits for everyone.
If aquaponics isn’t really your kids’ thing, how about digging for fossils, controlling a giant robotic hand, playing music with bananas, creating an explosion with water, controlling robots with code, or challenging an opponent to a game of Mindball? And that’s just the start…there are over fifty exhibits to experience at the Science Mill!
3) An easy, enjoyable indoor/outdoor experience for even the tiniest of explorers (and their grown-ups).
There are outdoor picnic tables (and you can bring your own picnic!), an outdoor play area with giant foam blocks, an indoor toddler play area, and restrooms with changing tables…pretty much everything you need to make for an easy, full day of fun.
4) On-site dining at the Lady Bird Lane Cafe.
Seeing as how there’s so much to see and do at the Science Mill, you’re bound to hear “I’m hungry!” at some point in your day. But guess what? No need to leave and come back…the Lady Bird Lane Cafe is right there, on-site, and offers a full menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, and kid-friendly items too.
5) It’s just beautiful.
Maybe this is just the “artsy-fartsy” side of me coming out, but this place really is just beautiful. The historic old mill has been wonderfully preserved and now boasts a gorgeous rustic industrial design that was intentionally aimed at preserving as much of the integrity of the property’s original purpose as possible. And the outdoor exhibit/play area is wonderfully shaded and full of sweet little butterflies and birds…and there’s certainly no shortage of art, if you keep your eyes open for it, that is!
6) Tons of fun, themed events to choose from each month.
The amazing exhibits aren’t all the museum has to offer. The Science Mill’s summer calendar is full of exciting events such as a Memorial Day Scavenger Hunt in May, a visit from Dr. Kold and a whole day dedicated to Drones & Droids in June, and an Incredible Insects event and Shark Week in July! Be sure to subscribe to their newsletter or check HERE for details on all upcoming events.
7) Summer camps.
If you live close enough, there are also week-long summer camps available for kids in third through eighth grade. Wouldn’t it be amazing to drop those kiddos off and spend your day enjoying the shops, art galleries, and restaurants, breweries, and wineries of Johnson City? For a whole week??
Sounds pretty great, right? Well, it gets better: If you have a group of ten or more, there’s a group discount for that. And if you’re active or retired military, you receive half-priced admission for yourself and up to three guests, thanks to a generous sponsorship from Whataburger!
You’ll find the Science Mill at 101 South Lady Bird Lane, Johnson City. And if you still need more information, you’re sure to find it on their website. Also, follow along on Facebook or Instagram to stay up-to-date on the latest and greatest news, exhibits, and events. And be sure to add the Science Mill to your family’s summer bucket list this year…maybe we’ll even see you there!
And go, explore, and HAVE FUN!
NOTES: Photos of the giant foam blocks and the indoor toddler playspace are courtesy of the Science Mill. This post was written in partnership with the Science Mill.