, which was built in 1943, has a distinguished history of service - including tours of duty in both World War II and Vietnam. In 1982 the ship began her second career as the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
Be sure to stop by the Exploreum, the 13,000 square foot, fully interactive exhibition space on the Museum's Hangar Deck. Divided into four zones, 18 new interactive exhibits designed especially for families and groups focus on Intrepid's history and its four educational themes of water, space, air and life at sea. Kids can climb in an actual Bell 47 helicopter, scale a cargo net, play "space pinball," and experience the sensation of being on water in a lifeboat.
Another The big crowd pleaser is the former USS Growler
, a 317 foot long guided-missile submarine that is the only American diesel-powered strategic missile submarine open to the public. The sub offers visitors a firsthand look at life aboard a submergeable vessel and a close-up inspection of what was once a "top secret" missile command center.
Access to the sub is limited to people 40" and taller
, and you'll have to climb through a knee-banger portal to prove you'll be able to handle doorways in the sub. Semi-guided tours run about every 15 minutes, in groups of 15. For obvious reasons, The Growler
is not wheelchair or stroller accessible.
There's an Au Bon Pain
downstairs in the museum proper (site of the ship's original mess hall!), and another on the second floor of the Museum's Welcome Center. Bathrooms
are plentiful and clean.
Don't miss the three simulator rides
, which cost an additional $8-$10 per person but are worth both the cost and the wait. The 14 seats in the all new 4D Motion Ride Theater
offer a wide range of dynamic 4D simulation and vibration, combined with 3D graphics, high definition sound and unmatched speed. G-Force Encounter
is just what you probably imagine, and the Transporter FX
includes special polarized glasses... and wind and mist are channeled through the cabin. Also worth a gander: the new state-of-the-art theatre, a beautiful new space where you can catch free 8 minute movie
, The Story of the Intrepid
, which chronicles the history of the aircraft carrier and her crew.
Souvenir possibilities include personalized dogtags ($6.95 and up). Credit cards accepted.
A two-hour birthday party
on board the Intrepid includes a hands-on activity led by an Intrepid Party Host. Guests also enjoy a birthday lunch, followed by a thrill ride on the XD Theater Flight Simulator. Possible party themes include Pilot, Astronaut, Spy, Navy Marine, Treasure Hunt and Rosie the Riveter. For more information, or to book a birthday party, please call 646.381.5010 or e-mail email@example.com
. Camp Intrepid
, for kids ages five to 13, is a multi-week, full-day summer day camp packed with hands-on activities, museum exhibit exploration, and interactive weekly themes that include "Boot Camp," "Underwater Exploration," and "A Pirate's Life." Campers get plenty of fresh air and sunshine exploring the newly renovated Pier and Flight Deck, and dine on an aircraft elevator, which doubles as a "mess deck!" For more Camp information, email firstname.lastname@example.org
or call 646.381.5166. Camp info can also be found on the museum's website
. Family Membership
starts at $140/year.