Aimee Custis Photography via Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Aimee Custis Photography via Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

NYC Will Be the Latest City to Host a Ball Pit for Grown-Ups

Aimee Custis Photography via Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Aimee Custis Photography via Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

It’s official: ball pits are no longer just the domain of children and fast food mascots. On August 21, JumpIn will be setting up camp in the offices of creative agency Pearlfisher in NYC. The interactive art installation will promote the “transformative powers of play,” and feature a room filled with 81,000 white plastic balls

This isn't the only option for young-spirited adults looking for the ultimate ball pit experience. “The BEACH,” an art installation that mixes experimental architecture with classic summer fun, is on display at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C. until September 7. Dreamt up by the firm Snarkitecture, the exhibit consists of a 10,000-square-foot enclosure filled with nearly 1 million translucent balls and a carpeted deck complete with beach chairs and umbrellas. According to the National Building Museum’s website, visitors can, "'swim' in the ocean, or can spend an afternoon at the ‘shore’s' edge reading a good book, play beach-related activities such as paddleball, grab a refreshing drink at the snack bar, or dangle their feet in the ocean off the pier.”

The JumpIn ball pit will be open to the public through September 21. Entrance is free with a suggested donation of $5, and for serious fun-seekers there's an option to reserve the room for 30 minutes at a time.

For The BEACH, tickets will be on sale online until August 24; after that they’re available on a first-come first-served basis. As for the fate of those nearly 1 million balls once the installation closes? "We don’t know what will happen to the balls," Snarkitecture co-founder Alex Mustonen told the Washingtonian. "They can be recycled." So seize the chance to dive in now before those plastic balls are turned into something significantly less awesome.

[h/t: CNN, Curbed NY

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Smithsonian
arrow
Pop Culture
Inside the New Oprah Winfrey Exhibition at the National Museum of African American History
Smithsonian
Smithsonian

The National Museum of African American History and Culture has shown millions of visitors artifacts from black history, from Nat Turner’s Bible to Michael Jackson’s fedora, since opening in Washington D.C. in 2016. Now, there's a new reason for guests to visit the institution: This month, it launched an exhibition dedicated to the life and impact of Oprah Winfrey, Afro reports.

The exhibit, titled "Watching Oprah: The Oprah Winfrey Show and American Culture," traces the life of the iconic philanthropist and media personality. It starts with "America Shapes Oprah, 1950s–1980s," a section devoted to Oprah's childhood during the civil rights movement. It's followed by "The Oprah Winfrey Show," which highlights her 25-year talk show, and a final section called "Oprah Shapes America," which looks at the evolution and influence of her work. The exhibit also features Oprah memorabilia, such as a model of her childhood church, costumes from her films Beloved (1998) and The Color Purple (1985), and the red suit she wore when she gave everyone in her studio audience a free car.

Oprah was one of the people who helped make the National Museum of African American History and Culture a reality after it struggled to get off the ground for decades. She was the museum's largest donor before it opened and has given a total of $20 million to the institution.

Oprah toured "Watching Oprah" with her best friend and CBS This Morning co-anchor Gayle King before it opened, and wrote on Instagram, "Seeing everything under one roof brought tears to my eyes."

The exhibit is open now through the end of June 2019.

Oprah exhibit at the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Oprah exhibit at the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Oprah exhibit at the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

[h/t Afro]

All images courtesy of Smithsonian.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Lexie de los Santos, National Geographic
arrow
History
How a Cold War Mission Led to the Discovery of the Titanic
Lexie de los Santos, National Geographic
Lexie de los Santos, National Geographic

The Titanic is one of the most famous shipwrecks on the seafloor, but for decades following the 1912 disaster, its debris remained undetected. It took a secret Cold War Navy mission to find two unrelated vessels to finally pinpoint the doomed ship's location.

Now, the history of the Titanic's discovery is the subject of “Titanic: The Untold Story," a new exhibit at the National Geographic Museum in Washington D.C. In 1985, U.S. Navy commander and National Geographic Explorer-at-Large Robert Ballard was commissioned by the Navy to use a submersible to find the wreckage of two nuclear submarines. The USS Thresher and the USS Scorpion both went down in the North Atlantic Ocean during the Cold War, and the U.S. government wanted to know why the ships sank, as well as what impact their nuclear reactors had on the environment.

Ballard agreed to help, but he had a request of his own: He wanted to use the submersible technology to search for the remains of the Titanic, which he suspected ended up in the same area as the submarines he was asked to investigate. He received permission to pursue the side project, just as long as he completed the primary mission.

After tracking down the Cold War submarines, Ballard and his crew launched their own mission to find the Titanic using historical records detailing where the ship may have sunk and where the lifeboats were rescued. They received the first images of the sunken ship's boiler, something last seen when the Titanic was above water, on September 1, 1985.

The previously classified story is told in detail at the National Geographic exhibit, which is now open to the public through January 6, 2019. The show will also feature artifacts from Titanic history, like a deck chair and sheet music that belonged to Wallace Hartley, the bandleader who insisted on playing as the ship sank.

[h/t National Geographic]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios