On Tuesday, for day six of our vacation we visited downtown Charlotte, where the Mint Museum of Creative Art and Design had an exhibit of historical quilts. On Tuesdays the museum is free! Not only did they have a beautiful display of over 30 historical quilts from the late 1700's up through the current time, but the rest of the museum had many displays of various types of art. We weren't allowed to take photos of the art, but I did get a few pictures of the girls in the kid's section, where they got some hands on experience with various types of art.
We left the museum and walked over to The Discovery Place. This is a science center somewhat similar to our Boston Science Museum or the Connecticut Science Center. While much of it was under renovation, there were two large areas of activities still open, as well as the IMAX theater. We really enjoyed the shipwreck and pirates area, where the girls learned about searching for and recovering sunken ships. They also got to experience hurricane force winds in a wind chamber.
The second section was an entire floor of the center devoted to simple machines with over 50 activity stations that had hands-on, interactive demonstrations and activities. After 45 minutes in the room, it was time for us to watch the IMAX movie: Lost Worlds. The movie was amazing and taught about the diverse ecologies of our planet and how they are all interconnected. Though the helicopter rides through the rain forest were a bit nauseating!
After the movie we gave the girls the option of finding lunch (it was well after 1PM) or returning to the simple machines displays. They unanimously voted to forgo lunch a little longer. We ended up spending another hour and a half there! We stopped at a Baskin Robbins on the way home for a quick snack of ice cream. After all it was 70 degrees out!
As we were heading back to my parent's home, we saw a sign for Joe Gibb's Racing and decided to squeeze in a visit. Samantha lucked out again as the #18 car was there! We were able to look from a gallery area down into the garage where they work on the cars. Samantha was very excited because they were putting the M&M decals onto the car! I had not brought my camera because we had thought it was just a gift shop, not the actual headquarters! Sam took a picture of Samantha in front of the #18 car with his phone. (We have yet to figure out how to get it off his phone!)
After dinner that night we went out to Mom and Dad's favorite ice cream place and had cones while standing outside... in JANUARY!!