Budget Problems Force Detroit Science Center To Close

Center To Close For Two Weeks Beginning Monday

DETROIT - The Detroit Science Center will be closing for two weeks due to budget problems.

The Detroit Science Center, along with the Detroit Children's Museum, will be closed beginning Monday. The museum hopes to reopen on Oct. 12, after the center develops a strategic plan to ensure that they will remain open for years to come.

The decision to close comes after Interim President and CEO, John Miller, said that he initiated an exhaustive review of the museum's financial operations.

"It came as kind of a surprise," said Sherri Welch, of Crain's Detroit Business. "They have had some operating deficits the last couple of years. The 2010 financials are not out yet, but the 2009 financials were just about $575,000 in operating loss."

Miller, along with Board Chairman Francois Castaing and the Board of Trustees made the decision to close in order to hold down expenses, conserve operating cash and re-examine the museum's operations from top to bottom.

In 2008-2009, the Detroit Science Center launched plans to build two national traveling exhibits, expand the building to include a public charter middle school, launch ots DSC Design & Exhibits subsidiary, open a new 4-D theater and build new exhibits.

These initiatives put financial strain on the museum, which was combined with a worsening economy and decline in philanthropic giving. The museum incurred further losses in 2010 when its Accidental Mummies exhibitions did not meet attendance and revenue expectations.

"They are telling me they are hoping to reopen in early October," Welch said.

For additional information on how this closure will affect group trips, memberships and other museum programs, please visit www.detroitsciencecenter.org

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