OMSI Named “Best Science Museum” By Newsweek Readers

In a resounding victory for the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI), Newsweek readers have crowned it the “Best Science Museum” in the United States. The announcement came on Thursday, April 7, as Newsweek unveiled the winners of its 2024 Reader’s Choice Awards. OMSI secured the coveted No. 1 spot in the highly competitive category.

The journey to this prestigious recognition began when Newsweek’s “expert panelists and contributors” nominated OMSI as a contender in early February. Readers were then given the opportunity to cast their vote for their favorite science museum every day throughout the month. Out of the 15 initial nominees, OMSI emerged as one of the 10 finalists, ultimately capturing the top spot.

The CEO and President of OMSI, Erin Graham, expressed both humility and joy in response to the award. Graham stated that the museum is “equally humbled and overjoyed” by the recognition, highlighting the collective effort and dedication of the OMSI team in providing an exceptional science museum experience.

OMSI’s rich history dates back to 1944 when the Oregon Museum Foundation was established, eventually evolving into what is now known as OMSI. The first exhibit was hosted at the Portland Hotel and expanded into neighboring businesses near the present-day Pioneer Courthouse Square. In 1949, local companies and individuals generously donated materials and their time to transform a house on Hassalo Street into a small museum. However, the building was later demolished in 1955 to make way for the Lloyd Center.

Not deterred by this setback, OMSI found a new home in Washington Park after the city council leased land to the museum. It was not until 1992 that OMSI’s science center, located on Water Avenue, opened its doors to the public. Since then, OMSI has become a hub of scientific exploration, education, and entertainment, captivating visitors of all ages with its interactive exhibits, planetarium shows, and immersive experiences.

Being named the “Best Science Museum” by Newsweek readers further solidifies OMSI’s reputation as a leading institution in the field of science education. The museum’s commitment to fostering curiosity, inspiring discovery, and promoting scientific literacy has undoubtedly resonated with visitors and enthusiasts nationwide.

As OMSI celebrates this remarkable achievement, it continues to push the boundaries of innovation and knowledge, providing a platform for engaging with the wonders of science. The recognition bestowed upon OMSI by Newsweek readers serves as a testament to the museum’s dedication to excellence and its ongoing mission to ignite a passion for science in all who visit.

OMSI’s distinction as the top science museum in the nation will undoubtedly attract even more visitors eager to experience its world-class exhibits and innovative programming. Congratulations to OMSI for this well-deserved honor, and may it continue to inspire generations of curious minds for years to come.