discovery park of america

Discovery Park of America

Union City Tennessee’s Discovery Park is flanked by two harvest-ready corn fields near a road bed that promises to be Interstate 69.  A 100-thousand-square-foot ultra-modern exhibit space anchors the park. At least 15 other buildings are on the park grounds including a working grist mill, train depot and restored century old chapel.

Inside the main building you’re greeted by a stuffed snarling grizzly bear perched on his hind legs. The activities inside range from a starship theater and expanding universe exhibit

Based in New York City, Thinc Design is an exhibition design firm that has created museum experiences around the world. It's originator, Tom Hennes, says the Discovery Park of America in Union City, inspired by the philanthropy of retired businessman Robert Kirkland, is full of fascinating exhibits. These exhibits, he says, are inspired by the community of Union City. We've met the Boston-based architect Louis Siriani who designed the building. We meet Tom Hennes with Kate Lochte, as we continue our coverage of this remarkable new tourism feature in our region.

Union City’s Discovery Park of America opens November 1.

The 50-acre park boasts a flagship “Discovery Center’ with ten educational galleries.  An earthquake simulator, a starship theater and 150 ft. observation tower are featured inside the 100,000 sq. center. Outside, the Discovery Park has themed areas, including “liberty square,” “mill ridge” and “the settlement.” Three gardens and a water feature run throughout the park.

Chad Lampe

Obion County, Tennessee, looks to a fantastic new attraction near Union City to bring many thousands of visitors annually. The Robert E. and Jenny D. Kirkland Foundation is Discovery Park’s principal benefactor. Mr. Kirkland ultimately chose Louis Siriani to be the architect for the 100,000 square foot center of the new 50-acre Discovery Park of America. Since 1984, Siriani's been a principal of the Boston architectural firm Verner Johnson, Inc, which specializes in planning and designing museums which in this country alone draw millions of visitors a year. Mr. Siriani has planned and designed science and technology, history, and multi-disciplinary museums all over the country and the world. He spoke with Kate Lochte about working with Mr. Kirkland and the Union City community for this ambitious project.

Discovery Park grist mill near completion

Jul 26, 2012

Volunteers at Union City’s Discovery Park are close to completing work on a grist mill that’s taken five years to build.  

Afternoon Round-Up 6/20/12

Jun 20, 2012
philld / Geograph project

Today on NPR: Advocates for prisoners have long argued that confinement conditions in prisons violate the constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment. On Tuesday, they made their case before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee, complete with a replica prison cell in the hearing room.

Four Rivers Region:

Discovery Park of America

Union City’s science and history themed Discovery Park of America is adding several extra attractions to its 100,000 square foot facility.