R2-D2, E.T., Hal 9000, and More Highlight New Michigan Science Center Exhibit

Replicas and interactive animatronics of R2-D2, E.T., Hal 9000, H.R. Giger’s Alien, and the DeLorean from “Back to the Future” will make an appearance at the Michigan Science Center (MiSci) in Detroit from May 19 to Aug. 11 as part of an exhibit called “POPnology” that blends Hollywood, pop culture, and science.
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A replica of R2-D2 from the “Star Wars” movies is part of the POPnology exhibit at the Michigan Science Center starting May 19. // Courtesy of the Michigan Science Center
A replica of R2-D2 from the “Star Wars” movies is part of the POPnology exhibit at the Michigan Science Center starting May 19. // Courtesy of the Michigan Science Center

Replicas and interactive animatronics of R2-D2, E.T., Hal 9000, H.R. Giger’s Alien, and the DeLorean from “Back to the Future” will make an appearance at the Michigan Science Center (MiSci) in Detroit starting Thursday as part of an exhibit called “POPnology” that blends Hollywood, pop culture, and science.

This educational traveling exhibit offerings rare and unique pop culture artifacts as well as 30 interactive activities that celebrate and explore the greatest works of innovation and imagination in pop culture history.

The 8,000-square-foot exhibit will run from May 19 to Aug. 11 in MiSci’s special exhibition space on its fourth floor.

“Anyone who loves movies will fall in love with POPnology,” says Christian Greer, president and CEO of MiSci. “So many of us at MiSci are movie and science-fiction geeks, so when we heard this coveted exhibit was available this summer, we jumped on it. It’s a fantastic way to delight kids while keeping them engaged in STEM in the cool, controlled environment of MiSci.”

The program is made possible by Signal Restoration Services in Troy.

“Signal Restoration Services is thrilled to support MiSci with this incredibly exciting exhibit that is sure to captivate visitors all summer long,” says Chad Howard, president and COO of Signal Restoration Services. “Science, learning, and growing is at the heart of what we do here at Signal. We believe in giving back to our community and helping children and families grow from fun and engaging learning experiences such as POPnology.

“Signal served as a critical partner to MiSci last summer and helped restore its facility after two sewer wastewater backup incidents forced MiSci to temporarily suspend its operations. It was a tremendous effort, and it’s such a rewarding and fulfilling moment for us to come full circle to sponsor POPnology.”

Over the course of two months, Signal mitigated the damages that had impacted several of the theaters at MiSci including the IMAX Dome Theater, Toyota Ford Engineering Theater, Science Stage, DTE Energy Sparks Theater, as well as the space capsule exhibit.

MiSci will host member preview days for POPnology from May 19-21 and will open to the general public on May 22. A special ribbon cutting and press conference will take place at 9 a.m. on May 25. POPnology was created by Stage Nine Design and is distributed by Exhibits Development Group.

The exhibit includes:

  • Full-sized DeLorean time machine replica.
  • Photo Ops with E.T., H.R. Giger’s alien statue, and HAL 9000 from “2001: A Space Odyssey.”
  • A 3-D printed car and 3-D printing demonstration.
  • R2-D2 & R5-D4 Astromech droids that roam around the exhibit space and interact with guests.
  • Social media photo booth.
  • Games that feature virtual and augmented reality
  • A Mars landing and a Mars rover simulator.

POPnology is included in MiSci’s general admission tickets. Prices are $18 for adults 16-64, $14 for youth 2-5 or seniors older than 65, and free for children under 2. Reserve tickets at www.mi-sci.org. MiSci is located at 5020 John R. St. in Midtown and is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday.

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