PacSci Perspectives


Celebrating Five Years of Tinker Tank

by Delaney Berreth | August 14, 2018

Prior to 2013, our exhibits team had often wondered: what would it be like to create an experience that lets guests in on the innovative, design thinking that we at PacSci get to do every day? We were intrigued by the idea of creating a new exhibit experience where our guests could expand their creativity by designing, building and testing creations to address everyday design and engineering challenges that they’re curious to explore. On August 16, 2013, this idea became a reality when our makerspace, Tinker Tank, first opened to our guests. In recent years, the maker movement has only grown stronger and Tinker Tank has flourished as a result.

Run mostly by our dedicated team of volunteers, Tinker Tank originally opened on Fridays only, with a new activity featured each month. Over time, as our volunteer and staffing capacity grew, we expanded our hours and more activities were added to the schedule. Since January 2017, Tinker Tank has been open daily, offering multiple rotating fun and innovative activities for curious minds of all ages, as well as the opportunity to interact with volunteer professionals from many different backgrounds who do similar work on a grand scale every day. Recently Tinker Tank has begun offering in-depth workshops, events and activities for many family, school and corporate groups. You may even see our Tinker Tank team out in the community providing hands-on activities at local events.

At Pacific Science Center, we embrace experimentation and innovation, and demonstrate that failure and iteration is a key ingredient to progress. Tinker Tank embodies those principles, as our guests are encouraged to try new things, learn, fail and try again. All of our activities provide these experiences, from bridge-building design challenges to circuits, coding and beyond. Imagine designing and printing a 3D object alongside a rocket scientist or coding a makey makey video game with a game developer!

Tinker Tank is celebrating its fifth anniversary this year on August 16, 2018. Make sure to stop by and celebrate with us – we can’t wait to tinker with you!

Images from Tinker Tank’s opening on August 16, 2013