I’ve always had an interest in the early manned space programmes such as Mercury, Gemini, Apollo and to a lesser extent what the Soviets were up to at the same time. When I realised there was an Apollo Command Module in Cleveland, I just had to visit the NASA Glenn Visitor Center.
This is located inside the Great Lakes Science Center and really the whole thing suffers from having two names. The place isn’t that large, so having two “separate” things seems a bit pointless to me.
NASA Glenn Visitor Center
Located right beside the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, the Great Lakes Science Center is easy to find. It looks like it is not swimming in funding, something I also thought when I went inside. After paying the admission fee of $16.95 I was in and straight to the Apollo CM.
There are space suits and other bits and bobs telling you about spaceflight in there. It’s interesting, but definitely aimed at school age children moreso than adults.
Exploring The Great Lakes Science Center
The whole place is fine, but it is all kind of old fashioned. When I got an Uber back to Cleveland Airport, I mentioned I’d been here to my driver and he said he went recently with his kids and it was the same as it was when HE was a kid.
Apart from randomly coming across a BOAC Boeing 707 engine cowling in the jet engine exhibit, the highlight for me was the mixing desk thing. You could mix Space Oddity by David Bowie, which was cool. I love being able to hear parts of songs isolated, it’s just very awesome! Near that were drums and other instruments you could play, which was also fun… if only I could play!
The NASA Glenn Visitor Center and Great Lakes Science Center could probably all do with an upgrade. It is a great space, it’s just a little too old school for kids today, to my eyes.
Still, it contains some interesting exhibits inside and would kill an hour or two of a day. I’m glad I went, but I wouldn’t go back unless I had a passel of children in tow.
Have you been to the NASA Glenn Visitor Center / Great Lakes Science Center in Cleveland? What did you think? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.