GREENSBORO - 2011 was a record-breaking year for the Natural Science Center in Greensboro.
The center saw a 10 percent jump in attendance and officials said they have big plans on the horizon which will make the coming years just as successful. Officials said it is the exhibits that are drawing people from across the state.
“Started with Bodies Revealed, ended with Titanic and we have a great summer in between so, we saw almost 320,000 people,” said Natural Science Center Executive Director Glenn Dobrogosz.
Dobrogosz said attendance is up 10 percent from the year before and more than double the attendance numbers from seven years ago.
“We know that this is the new mode of operation, we have to keep the audiences excited, they have to want to come back,” said Dobrogosz.
With that record breaking year in the books, the Center is turning their attention to the SciQuarium.
“The SciQuarium in itself though, you go from exhibit to educational experience, exhibit to educational experience, all the way around until you kind of, the finale is the big shark tank,” said Dobrogosz.
Officials expect the new addition to draw tens of thousand of people more each year. However Dobrogosz points out they are not done growing. A number of upgrades to the existing building are on tap and they're creating an endangered species village.
“I think it's been a good expansion, I think it's going to continue to be a good expansion. They've got a lot in the works with the SciQuarium they're putting in and I can't wait for it to open up,” said visitor Crystal Blanchard.
Construction on the SciQuarium is set to be completed by end of this year. Officials say it should open to public by April 2013.