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Carnegie Museums


The Journey begins at
Carnegie Science Center Rangos Omnimax® Theater
Now Showing —
through December 2003




















On August 4, UPMC SportsWorks
celebrates its second birthday. And, like any two-year-old, every day brings changes and growth.






Lewis & Clark: Great Journey West

History lessons don’t get much more spectacular than Lewis & Clark: Great Journey West, an OMNIMAX® film by National Geographic film that recreates highlights of the 8,000-mile trek of the famous duo and their Corps of Discovery.

With its breathtaking aerial views, symphonic and punchy musical scores, and a narration by Jeff Bridges, this film lets you experience the awe and the anxiety that the explorers themselves felt.

With the young Shoshone mother Sacagewea to guide them, and numerous tribes aiding them along the way, they saw what few Europeans had ever seen. The big screen brings you the full experience, from an immense herd of buffalo stampeding across a golden prairie, to a grizzly bear chase, and a chattering prairie dog brushing flies from his face—a sign of the insect hordes that plagued the explorers. The film compresses the entire journey into an exciting 40-minutes and whets your appetite to learn more about America’s most intrepid explorers.


Navigating with Lewis and Clark
at Henry Buhl, Jr. Planetarium & Observatory

Buhl Planetarium Director John Radzilowicz notes that while the OMNIMAX® film starts the expedition in St. Louis, the planetarium show begins the journey in Pittsburgh, which the explorers marked as their departure point. This 40-minute show focuses on how Lewis and Clark used celestial navigation on their way to the West Coast.

A feature of the planetarium program is the appearance by Eugene Gass Painter of Washington, Pa., the great-grandson of Patrick Gass—the longest-surviving member of the Lewis and Clark expedition. Patrick Gass published the first account of the trip, and his great-grandson, wearing period costume, reads from this published journal.

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UPMC SportsWorks

While most exhibit pieces have remained in place since UPMC SportsWorks opened, new activities, programs, and interactions are always being added to keep things fresh. They provide visitors a reason to return to the 40-plus exhibits of virtual games and sporting events, which range from Olympic bobsledding and hang gliding to hockey and roller coasters.

A good example of change is at the Rock Climbing Wall. “This exhibit is very popular,” says Steve Kovak, UPMC SportsWorks staff educator. “People do it a number of times, but it was always the same experience. So one of our staff members came up with different paths along the wall that have been color-coded to create beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. We made it a little different to challenge people a little more.”

The flight simulator for a FA-18 fighter jet —
the closest experience you can have to flying a
real fighterjet. This visitor-controlled ride gives
two people a full-body, full-motion experience,
moving 360 degrees on three axes.


Visitors can also look for the new “roaming” demonstrations at every visit. “People have a hard time staying focused on one thing for long because there’s
so much to do here,” says Kovak. “So roaming demonstrators walk around with props to interact with visitors.” These short “skits” include Drafting Quarters where a quarter and a small piece of paper show how air resistance works and Human Knot—a rope trick where two people are tied together and challenged to escape. “We try to make all the demonstrations open-ended so the kids have to figure out the answers,” says Kovak.

The exhibit demonstrations which explain what will happen in detail before visitors start playing, and the gallery demonstrations which offer a more in-depth look into the exhibit and the science behind it, receive regular facelifts
as well.

One of the most popular additions to UPMC SportsWorks is the Birthday Parties, which includes use of the party room for one hour, a 15-minute science demonstration, a commemorative T-shirt for the birthday child, and run of all
the exhibits. Refreshments are available upon request.

UPMC SportsWorks is made pos-sible through the generous support of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

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Copyright (c) 2003 CARNEGIE magazine. All rights reserved.