This is one of my very favorite trips and we often make a day of it on 6A, the girls and I.
It is still one of my favorites but lack of discretionary funds and a back still threatening to leave me on the floor left us enjoying the museum alone this morning.
As soon as you walk in the door, there is a feast for the eyes. The shop carries all kinds of decorative pieces, souvenir type pieces, replicas, books and jewelery.
The museum pieces are spectacular and we each have our favorites. Jenna's favorites are the galaxy pieces. The artist's wife is an astronaut and he uses photos she has taken as inspiration. You can see his work here, Josh Simpson. Here is one of our favorites.
Rowan's favorite is the canary glass. Not only is it lovely, but it is colored with depleted uranium dioxide. Under a black light it glows with the faint radiation caused by the mineral and while low level, it can also be picked up by a Geiger counter. There are examples of both in the gallery.
The Museum gives each child a bag of 3 handblown marbles as a gift. They aren't this nice but it is one of our best-loved souvenirs. These are made by a local artist, Fritz Lauenstein who had an exhibit there last year.
The multimedia presentation about life in rural New England at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution is exceptional and holds the attention of all but the smallest of children.
The gallery holds a time-line in glass work of the beginning of glass-making in the Mediterranean through the heyday of the early blowing and casting to the beginning of mass production with the pressers. It holds samples of everything every made in the Sandwich Glass Factory as well as other glass-work through the years.
The best part of the tour is the glass blowing demonstration. We are told of the beginnings of glass making, how it is made and what makes the colors among other things. In years past we have been treated to swans and paperweights, today the young lady blew a vase and pressed a glass plate with a little help from one of our group.
We had a grand time and hopefully we can go back soon and make a day of it on 6A.