In addition to the great list of 10 here a three more places to go to geek out with your kids in the Bay Area. (If you have a list for other cities, email one of us and we’ll post it.)
The Bay Model. This is a working scale model of the entire San Francisco Bay that reproduces the tidal flows of water in the Bay. It is huge. No really, the model is far larger than you can imagine. That picture above? It’s maybe 1/10 of the entire model. Maybe. Located in a huge hanger in Sausalito, it is bigger than a football field. It goes on and on. It was built and operated by the US Army Corp of Engineers to research the flows of water and to help them determine where/if to make interventions, or to head off things like oil spills and the like. It’s an amazing operation, water flowing slowly, with tremendous engineering brilliance, and if it does nothing else than to give you a feel for the complexity of the bay, then it has worked. If you or your kids like model worlds, this is the ultimate model world.
Scheffen Berger Factory Tour. A factory tour of any kind any time is always an eye opening experience for any interested in how things are made. There’s aren’t many factories in the Bay Area. This tiny chocolate factory in Berkeley is one of the few ones to offer a public tour. There’s really not a whole lot of machinery to see, but there’s enough to tickle your inner geek, and the bonus of a piece of fresh chocolate at the end makes it sweet.
Urban Ore. Does 200 toilets in a row excite you? You are not 12 years old. This is the Bay Area’s recycle-for-profit center, the place where dead objects go to be re-incarnated into chic retro cool. It’s all about possibilities, and of course about being thrifty. Oh yeah, green too.