For the lovers of “Why?” OMSI’s newest exhibit is perfect for them. The Science of Ripley’s Believe It or Not! goes beyond wowing your little ones and gives them a little scientific 411 to Ripley’s famous discoveries. Your tots can compare themselves to an animatronic replica of the world’s tallest man or find Bumblebee from Transformers and see exactly what makes his gears churn. Intrigued? Read on to discover more about this interactive exhibit.

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Going Beyond the Wow Factor
Seeking “the odd, the unusual, and the unexplained” since 1918, Robert Ripley traveled to over 200 countries in 35 years, gathering incredible stories and interesting artifacts from around the world. Today, his collections are housed in over 32 museums all around the world, dazzling audiences with exhibits that must be seen to be believed.

This newest exhibit from Ripley Entertainment Inc., demonstrates the “how” beyond Ripley’s fascinating and peculiar discoveries. Visitors of all ages will find their curiosity satisfied as they explore a room of Perceptions and Illusions to the wild Gallery of the Unexpected. They’ll also be able to witness how advanced technologies and tools can unravel and explain the mysteries of our world.

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What to See (and Believe):

The Science of Ripley’s Believe It or Not! has an eyeful of curiosities to check out, but here are a few that you and your little explorers won’t want to miss:

Learn about extreme biology and see how your height measures up against the towering skeleton of the extinct Elephant Bird. Then, check out the enormous Bumblebee transformer made out of used car parts. For real eye-opening amazement, watch daring footage of actual sword swallowers and learn about their precise techniques.

Head to the Gallery of the Unexpected, where you can peek through a microscope to observe incredible sculptures that fit on the head of a pin, before cruising by a Rolls Royce made out of over one million matchsticks. Don’t miss the portrait of Martin Luther King Jr. made out of postage stamps, or the Justin Bieber created from candy! It’s no science how those are made, but your little one will love the quirky aspect of it.

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What to Get Your Hands On:

Ready for a more hands on experience? Let your young adventurers investigate and explore the interactive parts of The Science of Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Don’t leave these things off of your agenda:

Climb up into a giant Chippendale chair that was built for one of the world’s tallest people. Explore the science of height while testing the “How Tall Will I Be?” computer activity. You can even measure yourself with a giant ruler next to the animated likeness of Robert Wadlow, a man who grew to be almost nine feet tall. (Be sure to stick around for a few minutes to see him stand to his full size before sitting down again).

Then, crawl through the open jaws and into the body of a life-sized Titanoba replica—the largest species of snake that ever lived.

Visit the Weird World area to touch a real meteorite and examine dinosaur fossils. Visit the Perceptions and Illusions room to create colorful silhouette art with your body, or test your skill at unlocking and opening the perplexing Mystery Gate. Finally, finish your visit by posing for a great family photo inside the jaws of an enormous Megalodon shark (that’s one for the holiday cards).

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Know Before You Go

Some of the more eye-popping displays in the exhibit can be a bit startling, including a collection of shrunken heads, a calf with two faces and large animal skeletons. Know your little science lover’s temperament and keep an eye out for the displays you may want to steer away from.

When: May 21-Sept. 7
Hours: Tues.-Sun., 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Cost: $9.50/youth (3-13) and seniors (63 and up); $13/adults; FREE/members and children under 2
Parking: $5
1945 SE Water Ave.
503-797-4000
Online: omsi.edu/ripleys-believe-it-or-not

Have you checked out The Science of Ripley’s Believe it Or Not!? Let us know what you thought in the comments below!

—Anna Doogan