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COSI Announces Reopening Date

Tuesday, 13 October 2020

COLUMBUS, OH – COSI will reopen to Members and the general public on Friday, November 20, 2020. “We are pleased to be reopening the nation’s #1 science center. We have implemented a number of safeguards, including the addition of a new, scientific and technologically advanced UV-C photohydroionization air sterilization system to our building. This new technology installation is in partnership with Columbus-based Air Force One, to ensure our guests feel confident in visiting COSI,” said Dr. Frederic Bertley, COSI President and CEO. “As we navigate through this global pandemic, the need for science literacy and engagement is more important than ever and only science will put the pandemic behind us. We look forward to welcoming everyone, including the scientists and leaders of tomorrow who will save us from the next global crisis.”

UV-C photohydroionization uses ultraviolet light within COSI’s heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system to kill and eliminate germs, viruses, and bacteria. As all things at COSI, this science is cool: within the HVAC system, UV-C light reacts with a catalyst and moisture from the air to produce safe, ionized hydro-peroxide that will now be in the air at COSI. That hydro-peroxide is safe for humans in the air, but not for germs and viruses.

COSI will be open three days a week, Friday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm from November 20 – December 20. After that date, open hours will be re-evaluated and announced. The following safety protocols will be in effect:
  • All COSI Team Members and all guests ages 6+ will be required to wear face coverings while visiting COSI;
  • All guests, including COSI Members, must reserve a timed admission ticket online in advance of their visit to ensure adequate space inside COSI for social distancing;
  • All guests will be required to visit a hand sanitizer station as they enter COSI;
  • Hand sanitizer stations have been placed throughout COSI at high-touch surfaces and near hands-on exhibits;
  • Enhanced cleaning and disinfection protocols have been put in place to ensure the COSI building and interactive exhibitions remain as clean as possible;
  • Due to restricted spaces, some COSI experiences will remain closed for the foreseeable future, including but not limited to, the National Geographic Giant Screen Theater, the Gadgets Stage, the Motion Simulator, the High-Wire Unicycle, the Submarine and the Alvinsphere in the Ocean exhibition, and the Mercury Capsule in the Space exhibition;
  • Any guests exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms, or those who have come into close contact (within 6 feet for 15 minutes for more) with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 14 days are asked not to visit COSI until they are well;
  • The full COSI reopening playbook, “Reopening COSI Responsibly: A Plan Rooted in Science,” that outlines the reopening policies and procedures can be found here.

COSI has extended the run of the ¡Cuba! exhibition in the American Museum of Natural History Special Exhibition Gallery through January 3, 2021. Admission to ¡Cuba! will be included with COSI Membership or general admission. Doc McStuffins: The Exhibit, also included with COSI Membership or general admission, will be open through January 3, 2021.

COSI has been closed since March 13, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout the closure, COSI has been engaging the community through COSI Connects. COSI Connects launches audiences of all ages into a universe of science through online videos, activities, science kits, plus a free mobile app that enables science exploration even when offline. COSI Connects is helping to bridge the digital divide, promote digital literacy, and address critical science education needs simultaneously. COSI continues to look for innovative ways to expand learning opportunities including the recent launch of Learning Lunchboxes, kits filled with hands-on science activities funded by the Franklin County Board of Commissioners, and distributed throughout the county in partnership with the Children’s Hunger Alliance. The new “COSI on Wheels: Curbside” initiative, supported by a grant from the City of Columbus Recreation and Parks, brings science learning opportunities to schools, neighborhood parks, libraries, and other community locations – and especially underserved neighborhoods, to help bridge the digital divide. Both programs are now being delivered statewide across Ohio through COSI’s Back-to-School Roadshow. For more information on COSI Connects visit cosi.org/connects.