Science centers: bastions of fun and exploration, destinations where children can let loose, providers of hands-on learning to spark a lifelong love of science. However, when children grow into adulthood in our technologically accelerating society, are they still called to science centers to satisfy their curiosity? In fact, many adults feel that science centers are no longer a place for them.
In a 2008 Reach Advisors study, more than 80% of respondents stated that science centers best served children and families, and only 22% said adults were best served. (Respondents could choose more than one option.) Increasingly, science centers face the challenge of how to engage adult audiences. To be relevant to these audiences and society in the 21st century, science centers must broaden their brand to appeal to adults as much as they do to children.