Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Travel Review: Creation Museum

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Well laid out presentation of the evidence for Creation
Cons: Only impactful for those who already believe or are open minded.
The Bottom Line:
World view explained
Creation presented well
Good for those seeking

Entertaining and Educational Tour of Creationism

Growing up in a conservative Christian family and church, I have long believed in Creationism.  In fact, Ken Ham spoke at my church more than once, and I heard him every time he was there.  While I don't follow the movement closely, I did hear about Ken Ham opening the Creation Museum in Kentucky a few years ago.  I have a friend who works there, so when I went to visit him recently, I was able to visit it.  It is very well done and very interesting.

The museum is located seven miles west of the Cincinnati airport, which puts it in the northern part of Kentucky.  It's just minutes from Ohio and one exit from Indiana.  It's open seven days a week, although hours do vary based on the season.

Admission is currently $21.95 for adults, $16.95 for seniors, and $11.95 for kids 5-12.  For a few dollars more, you can get a two day pass.

The heart of the museum is tour through the science of origins from a Biblical world view.  You actually start out in a couple of rooms that talk about world view, what it is, and how it matters.  The museum is very up front with the fact that they are taking the same evidence that all scientists have and viewing it through the lens of Scripture.  They also point out that Evolutionists are doing the same thing but just aren't admitting it.  There are also a couple of rooms that show how these world views interpret the same facts differently or how the facts support one world view (Creation) and not the other (Evolution).  Finally, they show how these different world views are played out in our daily lives.

From there, we travel back in time to the beginning.  We start our tour with some displays that marvel over the complexity of creation.  Then we travel back through displays that recreate the first few chapters of Genesis using figures and backgrounds to create a very beautiful Garden of Eden.  Each scene also offers explanations of how these stores fit into the Creationist view of origins and how it is supported by the evidence.  It doesn't shy away from the harder questions and answers them with the best scientific evidence available.  The exhibits continue with Noah, the ark, and his flood.

When you come to the end of the exhibit, you'll come to a display about dinosaurs.  While these ancient creatures have been discussed all along the way, this area actually has bones or recreations of them for you to enjoy.

There are a couple of theaters near the front of the museum to be sure to include in your visit.  The Special Effects Theater is currently showing "Men in White."  This movie runs about every 30 minutes and features two angels, Gabe and Mike, who come down to help a young woman with her questions.  It's a quick preview of what you'll see elsewhere in the museum.  With shaking seats and water spray, it's fun and very well done.

For an extra $7, you can enjoy a show in the planetarium.  Trust me, it's worth it.  The main presentation right now is "Created Cosmos," and it takes you on a tour of the universe in 22 minutes.  If the mere size isn't enough to blow your mind, the details and order of the universe certainly will.  They still show "Worlds of Creation" a couple times a day.  This was their first planetarium show and focuses on our own solar system.  If you only have time to do one, I recommend the other, although they are both good.

Rounding out the 700,000 square foot museum are a gift shop with all kinds of merchandise for all ages and two areas to grab a delicious lunch.  Prices at both are actually more reasonable than what you would expect at many museums and similar locations.

Outside, you can find a botanical garden.  It's very beautiful and includes all kinds of plants from around the world.  There is also a petting zoo for the kids to enjoy.  And new in 2010 are camel rides operating five of the seven days of the week.

All told, I spent a full day at the museum, from 10 AM to 6 PM when I was there.  I felt I got to see it all in that day, although I wouldn't have complained about going back again the next day, especially if it meant I could have heard some of the special speakers they have most days.  I was very impressed with how things were laid out and how they tried very hard to expect objections and counter them.

As someone who has followed Creationism over the years, I must admit I didn't find too much new there.  However, I did enjoy seeing it all again.  And it was very nice to go to a science museum and actually agree with what was being presented to me.

If you aren't someone who already believes in Creation, what you get out of the museum will reflect how open your mind is.  Just as I discount what I read in most science museums, you could easily walk through and not find anything remotely convincing.  However, if you are willing to listen to what is said, it will leave you with some questions that you will want to follow up on after you leave.

There are many areas that are interactive.  The day I was there, the displays were constantly being used by kids who seemed to be enjoying them.  I'm sure overall the kids went through it at a much faster pace then I did, but I'm sure they learned something from what they did see.

Personally, I found the Creation Museum to be a fun way to spend a day.  For those not up to the issues of Creation and Evolution, it would be quite informative.  Even for those who do know most of the information presented here, seeing it like this will be a great reminder of why we believe what we believe.

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