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Circus Zirkus

Chicago Children's Museum | Chicago, Ill.

Children can immerse themselves in backstage preparation, perform routines in center ring or manage the behind-the-scenes action of lights and sound. Plus, try making a circus balance toy or dress up like a clown.

Cost: Free with admission

Destination Solar System

Adler Planetarium | Chicago, Ill.

A live show that takes adventurous space explorers on an immersive tour of the Solar System. Set in the future, Destination Solar System flies audiences from one end of the Solar System to the other in under 30 minutes, from sizzling solar flares on the Sun to liquid methane lakes on Saturn's moon, Titan. Passengers can travel hundreds of millions of miles in just seconds on an adventure-filled tour led by Jesse, an enthusiastic, knowledgeable yet "green" tour guide, and MAX, a highly advanced, fully integrated onboard computer.

Cost: Check website

Opening the Vaults: Wonders of the 1893 World's Fair

Field Museum | Chicago, Ill.

Travel back to 1893 and experience the excitement of the White City. Digital technology will bring the World's Fair to life. Visitors will see items that thrilled fairgoers 120 years ago including large taxidermied animals, fully articulated animal skeletons, and ancient fish from Wyoming's Green River fossil bed. Using an iPad application, visitors can explore many items from the World's Fair still hidden in the Museum's vaults and will also get an overview of the Museum's history and the personalities who helped shape this institution.

Cost: Included in Discovery and All Access passes

The Machine Inside: Biomechanics

Field Museum | Chicago, Ill.

Exhibit explores animals and plants as machines built for survival, complete with pumps, pipes, insulation, motors, springs, and intelligence gathering devices. Using real specimens, life-like models, amazing video footage, and interactive displays, the exhibition investi­gates how cheetahs run so fast and fleas jump so far; how the bite force of an extinct fish made it a top predator; how a toucan stays cool in the jungle; how a Venus fly trap detects its next meal; and how many other organisms function as machines in order to survive, move, and discover. Presented in English and Spanish.

Cost: Included in Discovery and All-Access passes

80 at 80

Museum of Science and Industry | Chicago, Ill.

Special exhibit showcases 80 rarely displayed artifacts from the museum's extensive collection in honor of the museum's 80th anniversary. These artifacts, carefully selected by MSI curators, will ignite guests' memories from past exhibits but many will be revealed for the first time.

Cost: Free with admission

Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives

Museum of Science and Industry | Chicago, Ill.

The exhibit showcases the creative accomplishments and innovations of one of Chicago's native sons, Walt Disney, and the ongoing legacy of the company that bears his name. Features artifacts that have not been widely seen by the public, including drawings, props, costumes, artwork from classic Disney animation, theme park attractions, TV shows and live action films, plus items from contemporary Disney milestones. Hands-on, interactive stations bring Disney's technological breakthroughs in animation and motion pictures to life. Guests can try recording sound effects, explore Disney's revolutionary MultiPlane film camera and learn to draw some of their favorite Disney characters in the Animation Academy.

Cost: $9, $7 kids 3-11, plus admission

National Geographic Presents: Earth Explorers

Museum of Science and Industry | Chicago, Ill.

Journey to the wildest places on the globe, the Polar Regions, Oceans, Rain Forests, Mountains and Caves and Savannas. Explore an arctic cabin and test your ability to stand living in an ice-covered world. Descend into the deep in a 3-D submersible and explore how life forms at varying depths, even coming face-to-face with a great white shark! Identify incredible insects from the Amazon while learning the benefits of biodiversity. Ascend into the thin air of the Himalayas. Soar in a hot air balloon over the Savanna, learning about the life of elephants and other mammals.

Cost: $9, $7 kids, plus admission


Museum of Science and Industry | Chicago, Ill.

Explore some of the major scientific and technical advances of the last 100 years. This exhibit engages guests through a unique combination of experiences, including a 40-foot gesture wall. A short film inspires guests to think about humankind’s quest to build a better world and how technological progress is made possible. Explore the use of predictive models to understand complex phenomena like tsunamis and hurricanes, and learn how we innovate and share information to drive human progress.

Cost: Free with admission

Human Wrecking Ball

Chicago Children's Museum | Chicago, Ill.

Kids jump off a platform onto a 30-foot rope suspended from the ceiling of the museum, smacking into a stack of stuff and sending it flying.

Cost: Free with admission

Blue Man Group

Blue Man Group at Briar Street Theatre | Chicago, Ill.

Blue Man Group is a multi-sensory experience that fuses innovative theatrical spectacle and powerful original music with hilarious comedy to create a performance experience unlike any other. One of the world's most popular theatrical productions, today's Blue Man Group is a blend of signature material that has been in the show since the opening, as well as newer passages that examine the influence of technology on today's world with a funny and perceptive look at contemporary communication vehicles.

When: Performance dates and times vary. A full schedule can be found at:
Cost: $49-$99

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