STEM Itineraries in the Tri-Cities
3:30 p.m. – Swing by the Visit Tri-Cities Visitor Center for a self-guided Ice Age Floods Map, Visitor Guide and Flavor Dine Map. Listen intently as Visitor Center staff describe the multitude of STEM opportunities available throughout the area and feel the excitement building. Pop the collar and say to yourself: “Let’s go, it’s time to get your geek on!” Become distracted by the array of Visitor Center merchandise and purchase a few Manhattan Project National Historical Park postcards, magnet and ball cap before moving on with a wave to your new Visitor Center friends. Come back two minutes later to purchase a LIGO t-shirt and coffee mug.
4:30 p.m. – Check into your hotel. Whether you’re interested in riverside views, proximity to shopping and dining, or luxury amenities there is a hotel for every geek in the Tri-Cities.
5:30 p.m. Pasco is known for its authentic taco experience. Load up on carne asada, carnitas and more before heading to the Bechtel National Planetarium.
7:00 p.m. – Settle into a comfortable seat at the Bechtel National Planetarium for a show about Cells! Cells! Cells! Learn about how we are made of 70 trillion living cells and how they work, talk, think and keep us alive.
8:00 p.m. – Remain in the planetarium for the next show, Oasis in Space, and embark on a startling and magnificent journey through the solar system, galaxy and universe in search of water.
10:00 a.m. – Fuel up for an exciting day and have your pick of delicious pastries at the Richland Uptown with options like Kagen Coffee & Crepes, The Spudnut Shoppe or Some Bagels. Now that you’re armed with an adequate amount of carbs, head to the the REACH Musuem, where to your delight, you find an entire gallery devoted to the great floods. View petrified wood and fossils and attempt to piece together mammoth bones with an electric fossil dig activity.
Experience the Living Land gallery, which features the four seasons as well as some of the Native American artifacts uncovered in the region.
Move into the next gallery, which offers a glimpse of the top secret Manhattan Project and the role the Tri-Cities area played in the ending of WWII.
12:00 p.m. – Enjoy a bowl of the famous Red Potato Soup and a Portabella Road pizza at the cozy and hospitable Atomic Ale Brewpub & Eatery, where you will discover “scientific proof that flavor does exist!”
Feel inspired and order a slice of the Plutonium Porter Chocolate Cake and a sampler of the Atomic Amber.
3:30 p.m. – Arrive at the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) along with an eager throng of science-loving tourists and become absorbed in gravitational-wave research and discovery in an interactive and highly enlightening tour. Visit the control room and learn first-hand from the people who maintain and operate the world’s most sensitive measuring device!
Feel totally star struck towards the LIGO scientists who proved Einstein’s 100 year-old theory of relativity and were awarded the Nobel Prize of Physics in 2017!
6:00 p.m. – Pop into the Octopus’ Garden in the Richland Uptown for some atomic themed souvenirs and amusing must-have knickknacks.
7:00 p.m. – Enjoy a beautiful view of central Kennewick at a window seat inside Proof Gastropub while enjoying a Kennewick Man cocktail and Signature Pub Burger.
9:00 a.m. – After enjoying brunch at CG Public House, pull the Ice Age Floods map back out for another look at the remarkable landscapes and structures. Work in a stop at the Wallula Gap National Landmark, one of the most significant and breathtaking flood features along the route. Hike around the Wallula Gap Trail and ponder the scientific marvel of Lake Lewis and the floods in general.
11:30 a.m. – Begrudgingly, check out of your hotel, but not before booking your next trip that coincides with a tour of the B Reactor and an in depth REACH Museum tour of the lower Snake River, which includes a visit to many flood remnants.
10:00 p.m. – Dream blissfully of dazzling black holes, atomic heritage and thundering floods.