Young inventors get inspired by Atlanta museum's Rube Goldberg exhibit

His name is synonymous with wild contraptions in which a series of chain reactions turns the simplest of tasks into awe-inspiring feats of complexity. Now, legendary cartoonist Rube Goldberg and his incredible ideas are being celebrated at the perfect place: the Children’s Museum of Atlanta!

"Rube Goldberg: The World of Hilarious Invention!" opened at the Downtown Atlanta museum last month, and is scheduled to run through Jan. 2, 2022. Rube Goldberg was a Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist, and many of his best-known works featured humorous, overly-complicated machines that performed ordinary tasks. For example, Goldberg created a famed "self-operating napkin" which involved a parrot eating a cracker, a cigar being lit, and the swinging pendulum of a clock … all to wipe off the diner’s chin! Now known as "Rube Goldberg machines," these kinds of contraptions are used in competitions around the world, as well as in science classrooms. 

Of course, everything at the Children’s Museum of Atlanta is "hands-on," which means kids can try their hand at operating life-sized Rube Goldberg ma​chines and even inventing some of their own. The exhibit is part of the museum’s Step Up to Science, an expansion of the facility’s permanent science exhibit.

The Children's Museum of Atlanta is located at 275 Centennial Olympic Park Drive Northwest in Downtown Atlanta; Currently, the museum is requiring online reservations; windows are available from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily (except Wednesdays, when the museum is closed). All museum visitors ages 2 and older are also currently required to wear museum-approved face masks. 

Of course, we couldn’t wait to get inside the museum to try out a few of our own Rube Goldberg-inspired ideas, so we spent the morning getting really creative with a few of our newest friends. Click the video player to check it out!

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