We recently had the opportunity to visit the Neuseway Nature Park and Planetarium in Kinston, NC with some friends. We have been several times in the past but it had been quite awhile because they had been closed due to flooding from Hurricane Florence. This is a great field trip for all ages because they have a variety of options and exhibits.
We started the afternoon with a few minutes of free play on the playground while waiting for everyone to arrive. Once we were all present, we ventured into the science and planetarium building. There are multiple exhibits that you can explore at your own pace, including a giant model of the stomach that you can walk through, vision goggles that help you understand what it is like to have vision problems, a farm to table exhibit, building blocks, a hospital center, and even a tunnel.
Upstairs there are space themed exhibits, science books, and even a scale to see what you would weigh on different planets. This is also where the planetarium is located. They offer shows in the planetarium twice a day. You can also schedule a private planetarium show for your group for a small fee.
Once we had explored the science building and watched a planetarium showing, we ventured over to the nature building. This building houses both live animals and taxidermy exhibits, and had been badly damaged during the flooding. We were able to see a singing bird, who regaled everyone with ‘Happy Birthday’, turtles, alligators, and a tarantula. There were also some snakes on the other side of the room, but I decided I would skip that experience.
This is not a large center, but they have a variety of great exhibits and knowledgeable staff that are happy to answer questions. Admission is free unless you need special group accommodations. This is a fun half-day field trip for all ages.
Where: 401 W Caswell Street Kinston, NC 28501
Hours of Operation:
Tuesday – Saturday
9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
1 – 5 p.m.
Costs: Free (unless you want to schedule a separate Planetarium show)
Homeschool Discount: n/a
Food: There are drinks available for purchase and space for picnics outside.
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