When its doors reopen in the spring, visitors to the Annapolis Maritime Museum in Eastport will find state-of-the-art, high tech exhibits that encourage them to reach out and touch things.
“It’s been more than a decade since Annapolis Maritime Museum opened with new exhibits after Hurricane Isabel,” says Alice Estrada, president of the museum. “The lifespan of exhibits is eight to ten years, so we are overdue.”
The museum, which closed for renovations December 30, is set to reopen in spring of 2020.
“Our space will be transformed from a static, sleepy exhibit into a dynamic space that feels alive,” says Caitlin Swaim, the museum’s curator.
After the $880,000 renovations are completed, visitors will be able to explore galleries divided into three themes: Bay health, oyster economy and Annapolis waters.
Among the experiences awaiting explorers is an interactive touch screen table game. The exhibit challenges players to make decisions that connect oyster harvesting methods to cost, yield, income and Bay sustainability. Another lets you get out on the water… virtually.
“One of the new exhibits invites visitors to climb aboard a vessel and be transported in virtual boat rides in an immersive 360-degree experience,” Estrada says.
“The worn-in floors, exhausted exhibit interactives and slowly rotting workboat are a testament to how well-loved the exhibit has been over the past ten years,” Estrada says. “As the museum continues to grow — seeing nearly 85,000 visitors each year through programs, exhibits, and community events — the exhibits are ripe for a much needed upgrade.”
Events such as the Winter Lecture Series will take place as planned and Ellen O. Moyer Nature Park will remain open during the closure.