You, The Experience at Chicago Museum of Science & Industry

| November 11, 2009 | 0 Comments

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Thanks to Wendi Koziol and staff at Public Communications Inc., I had the wonderful privilege of attending the preview of You the Experience; a new exhibit and an interactive journey through the mind, body, and spirit at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. The new exhibit boasts 15,000 square feet in the State of the Art Abbott Hall, named for the worldwide health care company and donor of the exhibit. Words can hardly express how remarkable the experience was!

With a passion for healthy living, there is nothing more exciting than to see a permanent health exhibit in one of Chicago’s renowned museums that allows you discover your health journey. Having been on several field trips growing up to the Museum of Science and Industry, this visit exceeds far above my imaginations.

YOU the Experience was an idea in the Spring of 2004 beginning with the Museum’s strategic team. It’s a powerful reminder of collaboration and teamwork which has turned an idea into a reality. By the Fall of 2005, Patricia Ward, Ph. D. spearheaded YOU the Experience as the project planner along with a dedicated and talented internal team that was formed in addition to recruiting an external assemble. With the efforts of  construction crews, designers, researchers, health experts and many others, this $21.5 million project came into fruition and couldn’t have come at a more fitting time with our country’s health care crisis.

YOU the Experience lets you explore your own personal health and wellness. It invites and provokes visitors to discover their health journey. The exhibit is interactive and relies on the input of the people.  For example, the 13 foot Giant Heart relies on a person’s pulse. Within approximately 4-8 seconds, the state of the art HD digital imagery is able to beat to the visitor’s pulse and is visible on the giant screen- pretty impressive!

I love when you first enter into Abbot Hall, you are greeted with the Mindball game, surrounded by interactive, educational displays that has to do with how your mind affects your health such as the Laughter and Happiness Wall. Often times when people are not healthy, the first thing that they will try to change is their physical health, not understanding that the mind and emotions many times plays a greater role in our well-being. You have to change your mind before you can change your health habits.

My guest and I decided to take the Mindball Challenge, a game in which the player who is more relaxed wins. Unfortunately, I lost against my competitor who showed to be much more relaxed than I was that day. After all, my excuse was that she is newly married and still in la-la land, almost ten years younger, and no kids…hello? That’s not a fair competition! It was fascinating to witness right before our eyes how our brain waves reveal how relaxed we are or in my case how relaxed we are not. I guess my results indicate that I need to go to the Spa for some ME time!

I couldn’t participate in every booth, but among some of the exhibits that were truly amazing to observe or participate in were:

  • Face Your Future which gives you a glimpse into your future 10-20-30-50 years from now based upon your lifestyle choices. Check out the results as I “Faced My Future”
  • Get into Action– Learn to hip hop dance, basketball or tai chi moves with the help of a virtual coach.
  • Human Size Hamster Wheel– allows you to get real time feedback on your body’s response to aerobic movement.
  • IStan, The Human Patient Stimulator– Istan is totally computerized used to train medical and nursing students. Istan has also been featured as guest in ER and Grey’s Anatomy (which I’ve yet to watch). I was able to see  IStan have a cardiac arrest as well as an asthma attack; which is all too familiar having several family members with asthma.
  • What’s in Your Blood– A Virtual bloodstream and shows you countless of cells and molecules in the blood that allows you to explore your nourishment, physical activity and the body’s healing properties.
  • Expanded Body– a display of the entire body that’s separated but held together with a very fine structure and allows you to take a peek into the body’s many organs, tissues, and make up.
  • Vein Viewer– you can check out an image of your blood in your veins through an infrared camera. This device is now used in hospital to help medical personnel detect veins that are hard to find.

I can make a longer list, but you just have make a visit and experience the journey for yourself…AMAZING…INCREDIBLE…MIND BOGGLING…and an OUT OF THIS WORLD exhibit!!

The Preview Event concluded with a lovely reception on the lower level with food, beverage, and  a fabulous Acrobat show. You  have to really trust those scarves to do that!

If you are visiting Chicago and want to include The Museum of Science and Industry into your “things to do,” make sure you plan on carving one day to explore the incredible journey through the mind, body, and spirit.

You the Experience opens to the public on Thursday, October 8th and Admission is FREE for the month of October during the weekdays. It’s not just a Must See, it’s a Must Experience! Enjoy a journey that’s not only educational but FUN and UNFORGETABLE!

You can also watch my Intro to YOU the Experience on video.

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Category: Contest, See & Plays

About the Author ()

Duong Sheahan is a mother to three children. While her children are the most precious gift she's been given, she also believes in making "ME TIME" a priority. Keeping mommy healthy benefits the entire household. Duong is the author of her own blog www.livehealthierandhappier.com which focus on healthy living from the inside out.

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