Moving on up the MOST

When in the movie "The Wizard of Oz" Dorothy gets swept away from her home by a tornado and lands in an unfamiliar, but interestingly new place, she remarks in a curious tone to Toto, "I don't think we are in Kansas any more."

Anyone who has been to the MOST (Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science and Technology), the children's science and technology museum near Armory Square since the completion of its three newest exhibits (there will be six new exhibits when completed) may sense that same strangely curious sensation and wonder if they are still in Syracuse. The concepts and quality of these children exhibits are like nothing ever seen in Syracuse.

"We wanted high quality, exciting exhibits," said Larry Leatherman, president of the board of directors for the MOST. "That's why after a very detailed search, we selected the world-renown design company of Jack Rouse Associates (JRA) to do the conceptual design work," Leatherman said.

A quick check of the projects in the works or completed by JRA include museums and zoos such as the Columbus Zoo Pachyderm Exhibit, Cincinnati History Museum, A T. Rex Named Sue Traveling Exhibit, and the Kentucky Derby Museum. Their entertainment projects include A Day in the Park with Barney and Curious George Goes to Town (both at Universal Studios, Florida), Amazing Chicago, Grand View of the Yellow River (cultural theme park in China), Kings City (biblical theme park in Israel), LEGOLAND Windsor (Great Britain) and Restless Planet (Dubai). They have also done work for major sports complexes including the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame, Melbourne Cricket Ground (Australia) and the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame.

Expertise and quality work like this does not come cheap. That is why the MOST is currently in a capital campaign to raise $8.9 million by the end of 2009. Just this past week, at their annual Savoring Science Gala, the MOST announced a major gift contribution from the John Ben Snow Foundation, Inc. and Memorial Trust of $50,000 bringing the total raised to date to more than $5.5 million. Presenting the gift was Jonathan Snow, vice president and treasurer for the board of the John Ben Snow Foundation, Inc. and Memorial Trust.

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