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“Amazing! An expansive, educational, immaculate facility. Far exceeded our expectations!”

Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum
Ranked #1 of 36 things to do in McMinnville
Certificate of Excellence
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Attraction details
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed 20 February 2013

My husband and I have been to several air museums---including Duxford in the U.K. Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum is absolutely one of the best! Of course we were interested in seeing the Spruce Goose, but the museum has an amazing number of other aircraft, vehicles, space exploration modules and equipment, and even a Titan 2. I had no idea the Spruce Goose is as enormous as it is! I found it almost humorous that a few of my pictures of the Spruce Goose included what appeared to be a tiny airplane in the background. Oh....it was just one of those little B-17s!!!
We allowed three hours for our visit. This was not nearly long enough! While the admission (show your AAA card for a several dollar discount) came with a movie, we did not have time to view one as there was so much to see, to read, to learn, and to discuss with the knowledgeable veterans and other enthusiastic volunteers and guides. I'd recommend taking advantage of one of the tours (no extra charge); just factor in that you will not advance through the exhibits at the rate you might independently---but it will be a much richer experience and almost force you to take the time the exhibits deserve.
In advance of a trip to the museum it can be useful to view some of the videos accessible from the Museum website. There are others that can be found on YouTube, including the landing of the 747 at the McMinnville Airport across the street from the museum and the plane that is now atop the Waterpark. Where else can you leap into water tubes from the belly of a 747? You can also view videos of the construction of the Waterpark and the placement of the 747 on the top. I also found a video of Delford Smith discussing the idea for the museum and another that highlighted his vision for and use of helicopters as "workhorses" in industry, construction, search and rescue, fire fighting, etc. Learning that Smith was an adopted orphan makes the loss of his obviously intelligent and highly talented son even sadder. Some of Michael King Smith's awards and even his Corvette and a Mustang can be found at the Museum.
As another reviewer mentioned, I was also impressed with the patriotic (but not overwhelming) atmosphere of the Museum and the dedication to those who have served in the military or in the aviation industry. The volunteers with whom we spoke probably covered an age span of 60 years! It is apparent the concepts, the displays, the placement of items, the focus on education, and the vital role of the volunteers at the Museum are all projections of an insightful plan to educate, entertain, and maintain an awareness and appreciation for all the Museums contain and profess. While we did not experience the Waterpark during our visit, I think it is a grand addition to an amazing facility. And...I think I would like the person who thought up the idea of sticking an enormous plane on the roof of a waterpark and incorporating it into the chutes and slides. Makes me laugh.

Thank 411Shirley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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976 - 980 of 1,251 reviews

Reviewed 19 February 2013

Yes, they have the spruce goose but it towers over everything else that is jammed underneath or nearby. You can barely get a picture of one plane that doesn't have one or more in the picture. On top of that admission is $25. When you go into the spruce goose you have to pay another $25 to go up to the cockpit, which is a special tour. The VIP version of that tour gets you a picture in the pilot seat for $50. No way! Rest of the museum was fun. Loved the SR-71 and videos.

1  Thank CHARLES B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 February 2013

I have not read all the reviews here on Trip Advisor, perhaps some have already mentioned however a couple facts I would like to share we learned visiting the museum. To begin the dedication to fulfilling their mission statement, "To inspire and educate, to promote and preserve aviation and space history, and to honor the patriotic service of our veterans", is evident in the kindness, care, efforts of everyone who greets you. The museum is stunningly well maintained. The attractions are in magnificent condition. Outside there is a play structure for children, picnic seating, walk about facts and currently being constructed a, Boy Scout adventure area.

Delford Smith, the founder, has created a living legacy through the, Evergreen Aviation & Science Museum in memorial to his son, Captain Micheal Smith who died in a car crash in 1995. Delford's love for his son is apparent in every attraction presented to the public. The admiration Mr. Smith has for the life his son lived must be the inspiration for many extra special, remarkable events found at the museum. One of the sweetest contributions Delford has made in his son's honor is offering a continued purpose for veterans. Over 350, mostly retired from the armed services, volunteer at the museum. Delford's support for veterans goes beyond providing an outlet, a place to socialize he includes transportation for volunteers plus a free complete lunch in either cafe. A delicious pleasantry too. The benefit is multiplied by having these wonderful people available to guests who provide first person knowledge of aircraft you see and mechanics. There are several ladies who volunteer who spent time with our daughter telling their stories of serving in World War 2 as WAC's, working in shipyards raising families out of depressions. This museum offers way beyond the magnificent collections of aircraft, vehicles, space exhibits.

A tip, purchasing a membership at the museum is a great taxable deduction in addition you receive an annual ATCS Passport which allows free admission to over 230 other reciprocal museums/centers worldwide including hundreds in the USA, 15 in Oregon and Washington alone. Great deal!

1  Thank KimberlyAHazel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 February 2013

Great place to spend a day. Be sure and see all three buildings and see the movie. Main attraction is. the Spruce Goose. many other aircraft as well. Space museum well done

Thank Clyde B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 February 2013

Wow! This is a great place to spend the day, learn, and be entertained. There is something of interest for folks of all ages, including the 747 water park next door. I really enjoyed the quality displays, the variety of exhibits, the personal touch in a small group tour, and the informative reader boards. This venue truly takes one on a journey without ever leaving the ground, though your imagination can soar with pilots and astronauts through story after story over the past 110 years of aviation history. One can only come away from this with a great appreciation and elevated understanding for the capabilities of the human spirit and the opportunities that were mostly borne within our remarkable country.

Thank Joel H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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