Springfield Science Museum, Springfield, MA

Parking is free - there are two lots, one directly in front of the ticketing area, and another across the street.
The Science Museum is the first building you'll see as you approach. This museum hosts the popular dinosaur exhibit once per year. Regular exhibits include an aquarium & terrarium area, many examples of stuffed animals, early American History, an Earth Sciences section, a planetarium (still looking forward to this - have removed myself due to crying both times I tried to take them in), and a dinosaur area.
The Science Museum hosts most of the special programs that are available at the Quadrangle. On certain days additional areas are opened - a really awesome activity room in the basement and a second area with art projects near the planetarium.
The gift shop is lovely, and set up pretty well so that the high end fragile stuff is on one side and the kid friendly stuff is on the other. Unfortunately it's impossible to avoid the gift shop because the seating area where you can have your lunch is literally inside the store. There are a few vending machines there, but otherwise no food for sale, so definitely bring your own. The restrooms are fine. The best one is the handicapped one located right in the entrance area.
We have a membership to this museum complex and it is a GREAT DEAL. The regular admission, the other museums that we can visit for free on the passport program, such as the Boston Children's Museum, the Boston Science Museum, or the Ecotarium. The special programs that they hold there, the permanent exhibits and the weekend family events... all of these make the membership very worthwhile for us.

Springfield Science Museum

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