Science Central’s Family Fun Fest member-only event for Friday, February 23 has been canceled.

Last updated: October 18, 2023 at 12:21 pm

This fact sheet was compiled for use by the media, partner organizations, and the general public.

Facility:

  • Opened November 5, 1995 in the historic, iconic 1929 City Light and Power building
  • Original renovations and exhibits cost $9 million
  • 70,000 square foot building
  • 35,000-square feet of exhibit space, temporary exhibition area, two classrooms, a video learning space, demonstration theater, gift shop, exhibits repair shop and offices
  • Completed a $1.6M Science On a Sphere capital project in 2013, the first expansion since opening
  • Installing a $3.2M Planetarium capital project
  • Replaced most original exhibits during 2018-2023

Budget:

  • Nearly $2.2M annually
  • About 44% of the operating budget came from earned revenue and 56% from fundraising
  • Debt-free since 2012
  • Net Assets of $7.5M
  • 2 endowment funds, managed and self-managed
  • Receive no annual government funds for general operations, unlike other U.S. science centers

Visitors:

  • Over 3 million people, including on-site and outreach visitation, have been served since 1995
  • Annual measurable impact of 135,000 people
  • Visitors came from 46 States in the past year
  • 49% of general public visitors were from outside Fort Wayne and 44% were from outside Allen County
  • Served 31 counties around the Tri-State region with school outreaches and study trips
  • Almost 860,000 people have been served through outreach programs since opening
  • Approximately 2,400 Memberships

Distinctions:

  • The only science center in the region, and the most-visited Fort Wayne museum
  • Indiana’s first museum-based NOAA’s Science On a Sphere exhibit
  • Will open the region’s only public planetarium, with both starball and digital projection systems
  • Voted 4th Best Indiana Museum in 2018 and Top 20 Museum in 2020 by the Indiana Department of Tourism, and 4th Best Indiana Science Museum by Tripadvisor in 2023
  • 4-time national award winner for interactive virtual learning
  • Partnerships with museums, universities, schools, media, libraries and government agencies
  • Staff serve on STEM-related boards, committees and community groups

Programs:

  • Student study trips, demonstrations, labs, outreach, birthday parties, camps, workshops, scout programs, overnights, adult programs, early learners, themed festivals, homeschool activities
  • Specialized training workshops for nearly 8,500 pre-service and in-service teachers since opening
  • All school programs correlate to Indiana’s State Standards for Science
  • Featured in weekly radio and television segments
  • Educational interactive video programs nationally and internationally
  • Host Disabilities Days
  • Host numerous free or reduced admission days
  • Provide nearly 500 charitable free passes a year

Economic Impact:

  • Premier cultural institution that improves the local quality of life, attracts and retains new businesses and residents, and contributes to the educational development of the region’s future employees
  • Out-of-town visitors annually contribute approximately $1 million to the local economy
  • Provides jobs to approximately 60 people
  • Approximately 200 volunteers

History

Looking for more in-depth info? Learn about the history of Science Central and the historic building we are in?

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