New $31.6M exhibit engages children at Discovery Place Museum - | WBTV Charlotte

New $31.6M exhibit engages children at Discovery Place Museum

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - It's been 18 months in the making. This weekend, a new $31.6M exhibit is set to debut this weekend at the Discovery Place Museum in Uptown Charlotte.

What better name for the museum's newest exhibit: "A World Alive." Merely looking is the least of what you can do. In this place, you are the scientist.

One of the cool things at Discovery Place is the Explore More Collections section where anyone you can bring in anything they've found or discovered to see what it actually is. After placing your item under a microscope, you have the opportunity to enter the picture and details into Discovery Place's online database where it can be viewed by thousands.

Another draw is the Explore More Life section, where you get to roll up your sleeves and get your hands into the water at the "Touch Tank" and get a feel for things that you would likely never touch anywhere else, like sea urchins and starfish.

Our backstage pass gave us an up-front look at the process to take a group of White Bamboo Sharks and escort them to their new home, a eye catching aquarium.

We took a few more steps to walk with the wild -- all made possible in a simulated rainforest. If you really want to be apart of the experience, walk on the suspension bridge, which puts you in the atmosphere.

Also, there's something you can't see: the temperature. It feels exactly like it would if you were in an actual rainforest. It's complete with the animals you'd expect to see. But then there are the ones you might miss if you weren't paying close attention and taking an extremely close look.

While you're watching them, someone is watching you. A blue macaw "BJ" is best known for her moves and for her words -- the ones she spoke, to our luck, when the camera was off.

It's a great place for children to learn through experience, and why people love working at Discovery Place. "It makes us feel wonderful, we're all kids at heart, some of us are more than kids at heart," Discovery Place President & CEO John Mackay laughed, "when we see that it makes us feel young again as well."

When they see the joy and fascination in a child, they often see themselves.

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