Evolution

About-Us

Fact Sheet

Thank you for your interest in Science Central.

Facility:

  • Opened November 5, 1995 in the historic, iconic former City Light and Power Plant, built in 1929
  • Original renovations and exhibits cost $9 million
  • 70,000 square foot building
  • 35,000-square feet of exhibit space, temporary exhibition area, three classrooms, demonstration theater, gift shop, exhibits repair shop and offices
  • Completed a $1.6M capital campaign in 2013, the first expansion since opening
  • Preparing to install a $2.2M capital project, the region’s only public planetarium
  • Replaced all exhibits on the lower level in 2018

Budget:

  • Approximately $2.1M
  • About 43% of the operating budget came from earned revenue and 57% from unearned
  • Receive no annual government funds for general operations, unlike other U.S. science centers
  • Debt-free since 2012
  • Net Assets of $6M, including $1M invested
  • Created a self-restricted Endowment, with plans to expand

Visitors:

  • Nearly 3 million people, including on-site and outreach visitation, have been served since 1995
  • Annual measurable impact of 135,000 people
  • Visitors came from 40 States in the past year
  • 49% of general public visitors and 82% of school groups were from outside Allen County 
  • Served 31 counties around the Tri-State region with school outreaches and study trips 
  • Almost 800,000 people have been served through outreach programs since opening
  • Approximately 2,300 Memberships

Distinctions:

  • The only science center in the region, and the most-visited Fort Wayne museum
  • Indiana’s first museum-based NOAA’s Science On a Sphere exhibit
  • Voted 4th Best Indiana Museum by the Indiana Department of Tourism in 2018
  • Partnerships with museums, universities, school districts, radio and television stations, after-school, libraries and government agencies
  • Staff serve on STEM-related boards, committees and community groups

Programs:

  • Student study trips, demonstrations, labs, outreach, birthday parties, science camps, teacher training, scout programs, overnights, science competitions, adult programs, themed festivals, homeschool activities
  • Specialized training workshops for nearly 8,300 pre-service and in-service teachers since opening
  • All school programs correlate to Indiana’s State Standards for Science
  • Featured in weekly radio and television segments hosted by the Executive Director
  • Educational Interactive Video Conferencing nationally and internationally
  • Host special abilities days for visitors with disabilities
  • Host free or reduced admission days, and provide free passes for nearly 14,000 people a year

Economic Impact:

  • Premier cultural institution improving the local quality of life, attract and retain new businesses and residents, and contribute to the educational development of the region’s future employees
  • Out-of-town visitors annually contribute approximately $1 million to the local economy
  • Provide jobs to approximately 60 people
  • Approximately 300 volunteers