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Wikimedia Commons/Beyond My Ken
Wikimedia Commons/Beyond My Ken

Happy Birthday, Franklin Institute!

Wikimedia Commons/Beyond My Ken
Wikimedia Commons/Beyond My Ken

On this day in 1930, groundbreaking ceremonies were held for the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. The Institute, named for Benjamin Franklin, is one of the oldest centers of science education and development in the United States, dating to 1824. All these years later, it hosts thousands of tourists yearly. Here, some of the coolest stuff at the Institute. (And if you come to Philly be sure to say hi to me @errrica!)

The Giant Heart

Perhaps the most famous exhibit at the Franklin Institute is the giant heart. Patrons can walk through to learn about human anatomy.

The Sky Bike

To learn about the center of gravity, the Institute installed the Sky Bike in 2000. It is the only high wire bike on the East Coast, and only the second in the entire United States. It sits 28 feet above the center's atrium. Guests pedal a two-wheel bike across a 60-foot wire only one inch in diameter!

The Flight Simulator

See what it feels like to experience aerial combat on the Max Flight Simulator.

Red-Tailed Hawks

In 2009, two red-tailed hawks built a nest on a window ledge at the Institute. Since then, they've been live-streaming the progress of the birds. Learn more about them over on the Hawk Watch blog.

Maillardet's Automaton

Amazing Machine, one of the Institute's permanent exhibits, allows visitors to experience a machine-like environment, including Maillardet's Automaton, which is said to have the largest cam-based memory of any automaton of the era.

The Benjamin Franklin National Memorial

In the main hall of the Institute, you'll find a 20-foot-tall marble sculpture of the center's namesake, Benjamin Franklin. It often serves as a site for gathering and concerts, as you'll see in the video below.

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Happy Birthday, Alex Trebek!
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Getty Images

Today, everyone's favorite game show host turns 76 years old. Let's celebrate!

ON SESAME STREET

In 2006, Trebek played “Special of the Day” with Telly.

ON CARD SHARKS

In 1980, the tables were turned, and Trebek found himself the contestant on this episode of Card Sharks. The “tell me about yourself” portion of the program doesn’t go so smoothly, but he’s pretty good at the game itself.

THROWING PEOPLE IN THE POOL

In this sketch for the 40th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards, Trebek throws a waiter in a pool. The takeaway is clear: Don’t phrase things in the form of a question when you’re talking to the Jeopardy! host.

TREBEK ON NASA

And how the agency’s work with other companies helps all of us, not just astronauts.

HOSTING WHEEL OF FORTUNE

Happy April Fool's Day 1997! (Pat Sajak hosted Jeopardy that night.)

ALEX, AUTOTUNED

MC TREBEK IN THE HIZZOUSE

That was the actual name of the category.

AND JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT IT COULDN'T GET ANY WEIRDER...

Behold “Sexiest Potpourri Ever.”

LAST BUT NOT LEAST...

You didn’t think we’d leave without posting one of these, did you?

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Covers of "Me and Bobby McGee"
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Getty Images

On this day in 1970, Janis Joplin died of a heroin overdose at the age of 27. The singer-songwriter was known as "The Queen of Psychedelic Soul." Here, we remember Joplin with covers of her only number-one hit, "Me and Bobby McGee." Joplin's version of the song, originally written by Kris Kristofferson and Fred Foster, topped the charts after her death, making the song the second posthumous number-one single in U.S. chart history.

Johnny Cash

Pink

Willie Nelson

Dolly Parton

James Last

Jerry Lee Lewis

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