Support helps museum reach fundraising milestone; $425,000 is still left to raise
(WICHITA, KAN.) (Monday, May 8, 2017) — Exploration Place, The Sedgwick County Science and Discovery Center, has secured Spirit AeroSystems as presenting sponsor for the museum’s new aviation exhibit, Design Build Fly, set to open Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017.
As presenting sponsor, Spirit AeroSystems will provide a significant cash gift as well as substantial in-kind support for the exhibit. This gift helps the museum reach its $2 million mark of the project’s $2.5 million fundraising goal – with about $425,000 remaining to endow the exhibit.
“Spirit AeroSystems is proud to support this new exhibit that will inspire the next generation of aerospace employees to design, build and fly the next generation of aircraft,” said Jason Beckmann, Spirit vice president of contracts and an Exploration Place board member. “This exhibit will also celebrate the rich aviation heritage of
companies like Spirit that make Wichita the Air Capital of the World.”
The $425,000 left to raise will help fund future efforts to keep the exhibit updated with the latest information and technology about the industry. Other major funders include the Berry Foundation, Cox Machine, Inc., Estate of Muriel C. Braden, The Fidelity Bank Foundation, Bombardier, Grumpy Old Men, S. M. and Laura H. Brown Charitable Trust, Textron Aviation and Rhonda and Jeff Turner.
The 5,100 square-foot Design Build Fly exhibit will engage visitors in immersive hands-on experiences that emulate aviation careers centered on manufacturing and engineering. A portion of the in-kind support from Spirit AeroSystems includes creating special video short stories about the Wichita aviation industry for the
exhibit’s fuselage theater.
“Design Build Fly celebrates our aviation industry – the heart and soul of our community, and the region’s vital economic driver,” said Jan Luth, Exploration Place president. “This outstanding support from Spirit AeroSystems, the region’s largest aviation employer, is the perfect complement as this exhibit’s presenting sponsor,” Luth said.
As visitors make their way through Design Build Fly, they’ll uncover what happens behind-the-scenes in our community’s aircraft plants. In addition to the fuselage theater, visitors will encounter a deconstructed full-sized business jet, and dozens of interactive stations and activities for all ages that tie to the process of producing an aircraft.
Museum staff is working with the award-winning company Roto to develop and produce Design Build Fly – which will be the museum’s second completely new permanent exhibit in just a little more than two years. An opening weekend celebration is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017.
Exploration Place offers visitors of all ages interactive environments, hands-on experiences, Kansas’ largest domed theater – the Boeing Dome Theater and Planetarium – imaginative spaces, and outdoor recreation, all located on a 20-acre site along the scenic Arkansas River in downtown Wichita, Kan. Details about
the museum are at www.exploration.org, or on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
Spirit AeroSystems designs and builds aerostructures for both commercial and defense customers. With headquarters in Wichita, Kansas, Spirit operates sites in the U.S., U.K., France and Malaysia. The company’s core products include fuselages, pylons, nacelles and wing components for the world’s premier aircraft. Spirit
AeroSystems focuses on affordable, innovative composite and aluminum manufacturing solutions to support customers around the globe. More information is available atwww.spiritaero.com.
Christina Bluml | Director of Marketing