The Bakken, Works Museums Partner to Offer Hands-On STEM Programming

Designing for Life Exhibit

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – The Bakken Museum (Minneapolis) and the Works Museum (Bloomington) have announced a partnership to offer hands-on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) programming. While the lower level of The Bakken Museum is under construction in the first half of 2020, Bakken Museum educators, tools, and exhibits will temporarily relocate to Bloomington to expand The Works Museum’s exciting science and engineering offerings.

Youth Programs: Bakken Museum educators will bring their tools and knowledge to Bloomington to offer their popular youth programs. Classes, including LEGO Robotics and Inventors Club, invite students in grades three through eight to plan and make their own projects using computer programming and design thinking. Programs run for four to six weeks on Saturday mornings and afternoons. The next program begins on February 29, and registration is available on The Bakken Museum’s website (thebakken.org/lego-robotics).

STEM Family Events: On Saturday, May 2, The Bakken Museum and The Works will partner to host an event, She Discovers, at The Works. During the event, families are invited to meet female scientists and engineers to learn about the work they are doing to make the world a better place through innovations in STEM. The Bakken Museum will also host a robotics activity at The Works Museum’s upcoming Robot Day family event on Saturday, April 18.

Designing for Life Exhibit: The Designing for Life exhibit explores how design and engineering can be used to impact human lives positively. Visitors learn to use a variety of tools and techniques to transform 2D paper into useful and innovative 3D objects in the Paper Engineering section of the exhibit. In the Personal Prostheses portion of the exhibit, visitors try out different forms of prosthetic hands to learn how there is no one-size-fits-all approach to finding the right prosthesis for everyday life. Support for Designing for Life was generously provided by The Lillehei Family Foundation, Fredrikson & Byron P.A., and Riverbridge. The Designing for Life exhibit is currently on display at The Works Musem.

Reciprocal Membership: During the partnership, members of The Bakken Museum and The Works will receive mutual benefits including free admission, store discounts, and complimentary access tickets to events, including Robot Day and She Discovers.


In November, The Bakken Museum released virtual reality renderings of their redesign, including modernized education and event spaces, a dramatic new entrance facing Bde Maka Ska (formerly Lake Calhoun), and new exhibit experiences.

Throughout construction, The Bakken Museum’s West Winds mansion will be open on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is available for private rentals every day of the week. The Works Museum is open Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturdays 10 a.m. to 5 pm., and Sundays 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.


The Bakken Museum inspires a passion for innovation by exploring the potential for science, technology, and the humanities to make the world a better place. The museum features a world-renowned collection of books and artifacts, multiple galleries focusing on the wonders of invention, plant medicine, technology, and science, and The Florence Bakken Medicinal Garden. For more information, visit thebakken.org or call 612-926-3878.


The Works Museum is all about hands-on engineering and design for kids and families. It serves more than 75,000 children, families, and educators annually, inspiring the next generation of innovators, engineers, and creative problem-solvers. For more information, visit theworks.org or call 952-888-4262.


Laura Whittet
Associate Director of Communications, The Bakken Museum
O: 612-926-3878 ext. 227

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