With an emphasis on space exploration, and how its discoveries in science and technology have benefited all of mankind, this museum was designed to be truly different:
- Admission is free and 100% privately funded through donations from local businesses such as Winans Investments Capital Management & Research and Jeremy Forcier of First Cal Mortgage, in-kind support from local businesses such as The Walter Kieckhefer Company, and individual donations.
- To keep costs contained, the museum is 100% volunteer staffed and is open three days a week or by appointment.
- Exhibits are changed four times a year by the volunteer staff to help encourage visitors to frequently return.
- The public is given a unique, tactile experience as they are allowed to touch some of the space-flown artifacts.
The Space Station museum is a tremendous success! Since its opening October 2011, the museum has averaged 642 visitors per month while only being open three days per week. Total attendance from all Space Station events in the Pacheco Plaza Shopping Center over the past ten months has exceeded 4,952 visitors. This figure equals 10% of Novato’s entire population! Visitors have come from all parts of the Bay Area and as far away Las Vegas, NV. Remarkably, marketing has been limited to word-of mouth, internet blogs, and social networks.
Since the opening of The Space Station, The W Foundation’s volunteer base has increased from 18 to 36 with another 23 individuals who have stopped by the museum signed up to volunteer in the future. The donations have largely covered operational expenses.
The nimble Space Station museum is moving between Marin Coffee Roasters and Boca Pizzeria in the Pacheco Plaza Shopping Center. It will re-open on Saturday, June 30th from 11 to 4.
An outdoor event called Space Fest is planned for July 14th.