NMAI Director Kevin Gover invites public to new NYC imagiNATION Activity Center

The imagiNATIONS Activity Center is a modern learning facility that focuses on teaching Native American innovations

News Release

NMAI DC and New York

Kevin Gover, the Director of the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C. has written an open letter inviting the public to the new imaginNATION Activity Center in New York City.

The imaginNATION Activity Center is a family-friendly, interactive space, in which visitors of all ages can explore Native scientific discoveries and inventions that continue to affect the modern world. The center involves visitors with solving puzzles, performing experiments, and playing state-of-the-art computer simulations.

Kevin Gover, the Director of the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C. writes:

Visitors to the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C., have long enjoyed the imagiNATIONS Activity Center—where families can participate in hands-on activities that show how Native people have always used the natural environments around them to meet their needs.

Now, we’re excited to announce our NEW imagiNATION Activity Center has just opened in New York City!

These two centers make it very clear that Native people were the original innovators of the Americas. Connecting closely with their natural environment, Native people have long come up with brilliant ways to adapt, create, solve problems, and innovate in the world around them.

For example, did you know …

  • Amazon people were making rubber more than 3,500 years ago?
  • Inka people were making bridges that were 50% longer than the longest bridges then built in Spain?
  • We can thank Native Americans for four of the world’s top 10 crops, including corn, potatoes, and tomatoes?

There is so much to learn, see, and experience. This new center continues our goal to take our mission far beyond the Museum’s walls—and to show that the spirit of innovation is alive and well in Native communities today.

Next time you’re in Washington, D.C., or New York City, and particularly if you have young people with you, visit the centers for fun and educational workshops that you can do together, laughing while you learn.

You can take the Crop-etition Challenge and learn how Native Americans created innovative farming techniques … Do Maya Math and discover how Mayan merchants did business with a Base 20 system … try your skills at bridge building with Make it Shake It and see if your model can stand up to an earthquake (their bridges did!) … and more.

Our imagiNATIONS Activity Centers are full of fun, family-friendly, hands-on activities that share the story of Native American achievements in new and exciting ways. We thank our members and donors for making all these experiences possible!

The imagiNATIONS Activity Center is a modern learning facility for young visitors that focuses on teaching Native American innovations throughout history that shape today’s world through engaging interactive activities and installations. The center opened May 17 at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in New York.

For more information visit the NMAI site or their media page.

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