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15 Calendar

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 12, 2013
Contact: Wendy Malloy
Museum of History & Industry PR
media@mohai.org
206 324 1126 Ext. 150

Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos Flip the Switch on New Bezos Center for Innovation at MOHAI, Kicking Off Saturday Launch Celebration

October 12, 2013

SEATTLE, WA – Today, Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos joined the Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI) in officially launching the all-new Bezos Center for Innovation, an exciting new highlight of the museum experience where visitors explore the powerful story of innovation in Seattle.

Announced for the first time in August 2011, the Bezos Center is generously supported by a gift from Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos. The Bezos Center is specifically designed to engage young people, with a goal of providing every Puget Sound student the opportunity to connect to the innovation tradition, to sharpen their skills of invention and creativity, and to spark their own potential.

The Bezos Center opened with an event that brought together both experienced innovators and students from across the Puget Sound region for a morning of collaboration and exploration. Small groups of innovators and students discussed questions such as “What does a good idea feel like?” and “What is your dream job?”–the conversations that resulted were, according to one attendee, “fascinating and inspiring!” Students also had the opportunity to have their questions about innovation answered by Jeff Bezos during a Q&A session.

According to Garfield, “The Bezos Center for Innovation represents a new direction for history museums, using Seattle’s legendary past as a launchpad for the next great wave of innovators. We are deeply grateful to Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos, whose generosity allows MOHAI to directly connect young people to the powerful tradition of innovation which shapes our future.

The Bezos Center for Innovation officially opens to the public today, Saturday, October 12, 2013, and will be celebrated with a full day of activities, performances, and presentations that put museum visitors in direct contact with some of Seattle’s leading innovators. The museum will be open from 10 am until 5 pm, with regular admission for adults and free admission for children 14 and under; specific activities throughout the day include:

Inside Innovation Curator Tours

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the new Bezos Center for Innovation with the people who helped curate and design the exhibit, featuring MOHAI Public Historian Lorraine McConaghy, filmmaker and video producer Hanson Hosein, and historian and University of Washington professor Margaret O’Mara.

Innovative Arts Performances

Enjoy short performances from some of Seattle’s leading edge artists, featuring visual artist, composer, and musician Paul Rucker and circus performers Acrobatic Conundrum.

Idea Lab Power Hour

Participate in problem solving real-world challenges with guest innovators from across disciplines, featuring computer scientist and University of Washington professor Shwetak Patel, The Seattle Times award-winning columnist Monica Guzman, and grassroots organization Skate Like a Girl.

3D Printing with MakerHaus

See 3D printing in action and learn more about this innovative technology and how it’s being applied in all sorts of ways. Demonstrations occur all day long and are led by MakerHaus, a creative multi-use space in Fremont.

Family Fun

Pick up a new Innovation Pack to find hands-on activities for kids, play at one of our miniMOHAI stations, or try the new Innovation Family Guide—a scavenger hunt for families!

About the Bezos Center for Innovation

Featuring interactive experiences and special insights from some of Seattle’s leading innovators, the Bezos Center will engage visitors in the story of innovation and celebrate Seattle as a center of creativity and invention.   Announced for the first time in August 2011 (click here to see press release), the Bezos Center is generously supported by a gift from Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos. The Bezos Center is specifically designed to engage young people, with a goal of providing every Puget Sound student the opportunity to connect to the innovation tradition, to sharpen their skills of invention and creativity, and to spark their own potential.  

Images are available upon request.

About MOHAI

MOHAI is the largest private heritage organization in Washington State. Maintaining a collection of nearly four million artifacts, photographs, and archival materials from throughout the Puget Sound region, the museum engages communities through interactive exhibits, online resources, and award-winning public and youth education programs.