Michigan is rich with science, art, marine and historical museums – all perfect for an outing away from winter’s chill. Each museum offers unique displays, special exhibitions and hands-on activities for kids. Many of the major museums offer hotel and inn packages as well. Here are a few highlights:
The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) offers a huge menu of art classes, music, films, concerts and more for a winter weekend full of culture. This world-class museum has both permanent and traveling exhibits, and is the fifth-largest fine arts museum in the country offering over 100 galleries with art from ancient to modern times. After six years of partial or full closings, and a $158 million renovation, the DIA is fully open and bursting with new galleries and exhibits. You can experience music from around the world and around Detroit at Friday Night Live. The new DIA is open late every Friday night with live music, art-making workshops, drawing in the galleries, guided tours and much more.
Visit the Air Zoo in Portage and the family can take flight on several simulators including the Zero, Wildcat, Hellcat, Corsair, Kawasaki George and P-38 Lightning simulators—as well as the original F-18 flight simulator. The new system will give guests the opportunity to experience several different types of aircraft flight in the museum’s 360-degree, full-motion flight simulators. Celebrate the Wright brothers' first flight. Tour the International Space Station like never before. Take the controls of a military jet plane. With indoor amusement rides, full-motion flight simulators, the Midwest's only 4D theatres, live character actors and a collection of over 80 rare aircraft, there's something to make everyone's time fly. While there, take in the Michigan Space Science Center that ranks fourth in the nation for the number of Smithsonian Institution/National Air and Space Museum artifacts on display. The Air Zoo has a calendar of events for weekend visits geared for families.
More great museums include Flint’s Sloan Museum for history, science, culture and technology; in Grand Rapids you’ll want to stop by the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum.
Visit Michigan’s capitol to get in on all the family fun at the hands-on Impression 5 science center in Lansing. Kids and parents can explore electricity, dinosaurs, magnets, rocks, the human body and more.
And, you’ll want to plan to spend at least a day exploring The Henry Ford in Dearborn and experience America’s greatest history attraction—and be sure to take time for a tour of the Ford Rouge Factory.