Oppenheimer was the director of the museum until his death in 1985. Under Oppenheimer and three subsequent directors, the museum flourished and grew, educating both local and international visitors. Children were especially entertained by, static generators that made your hair stand on end;
Alice-in-Wonderland-esque rooms that seemed to grow smaller; and cow-eye
dissections carried out for groups of slightly horrified kids every few
The Exporatorium began to outgrow the Palace of Fine Arts as early as 1991, and the museum sought a brighter, larger space for its outreach and teacher training programs.6 In 2004, San Francisco offered derelict Piers 15 and 17 to the Exploratorium and its architects, EHDD, for an urban revitalization project that would see the museum gain a nine-acre campus and the equivalent of three football fields worth of indoor and outdoor exhibition space.7
In addition to its interactive galleries, outdoor exhibits, and online apps, the Exploratorium hosts the Cinema Arts program, a Tinkering workshop series, and the Resonance program for new music exploration. Every Thursday evening is 'adults only' night from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m..
Visitors with disabilities can visit the museum at a reduced rate. All the galleries, restaurants, and washrooms at Pier 15 are wheelchair accessible. There is disabled permit parking near Pier 15. Wheelchairs and tactile maps for the vision impaired are available at the Information Desk.