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Experience, learn and engage at MOTAT this summer

Experience, learn and engage at MOTAT this summer

If you are looking for something to keep the family entertained in Auckland these long Summer holidays, then MOTAT is the perfect destination! The exciting line-up of activities includes a new exhibition celebrating the 200th anniversary of the bicycle, an interactive January holiday experience and augmented reality to engage young minds.

First up on the MOTAT “must do list” is Changing Gear, an exciting new cycling exhibition developed in partnership with Auckland Transport, which opened December 9. The exhibition delves into the history, science, innovation and cultural revival of bicycle technology and transport.

MOTAT’s Exhibition Manager Rebecca Britt says, “Changing Gear is an interactive experience giving visitors a chance to play digital dress ups in cycling clothes through the ages, experience the thrill of riding a BMX or mountain bike, test the power of their legs against Team New Zealand’s cycle grinders and have a go at improving a city by supporting cyclists.” The many stories and collection items on display showcase progress, innovation, education, charity, and advocacy from the wider community.

Auckland Council’s recent investment in cycle infrastructure is clearly visible around the city, and according to Auckland Transport last year, 45 000 new riders ventured onto the new cycleways that are connecting parts of Auckland. These figures suggest there’s been a shift in social habits and attitudes towards active travelling.

Auckland Transport Director Mark Gilbert says, “The title of this exhibition, ‘Changing Gear’ is very reflective of where Auckland is at right now – we really are changing gear when it comes to cycling. It’s also a great reminder that we are building for not only our children’s generation but also for the generations to come. We are proud to partner with MOTAT on Changing Gear as we know that as well as building the right infrastructure, we need to create a cycling culture through initiatives like this.”

The modern bicycle has come a long way since the humble velocipede, with the 200-year-old technology evolving to fit the wants and needs of a changing society. Today, demand and innovation has produced the electric bike, reigniting a cycling culture once again growing in popularity.

What could the future look like for cycling and its place in our communities and cities? Explore the possibilities at Changing Gear and go in the draw to win a SmartMotion e-bike valued at $2,500.

Throughout January, the “On Ya Bike” holiday experience will be running in conjunction with the Changing Gear exhibition. Holiday activities will run every day from January 2 to 29 to build on the cycling themes of Changing Gear, delving into the scientific principles behind pedal-powered machines, and investigating the weird and wacky side of this technology. With a high energy live show, a multi-user circular bicycle installation and a series of common bike maintenance demonstrations and “hacks”, this holiday experience offers kids a fun and educational day out that’s bound to motivate them to get on their bikes.

Open at MOTAT through December and January, the Curious Critters Club activation is transforming the museum into an augmented world, home to a host of new creatures waiting to be discovered. Visitors are encouraged to explore the site equipped with their smart device to identify and catalogue the virtual critters roaming the museum grounds.

Yoozoo Founder and Creative Director Julian Stokoe says, “Curious Critters Club is designed to help kids learn and evolve through play and discovery. We’ve devised this series so that children can utilise technology to help them learn about the world, interact with others and develop curiosity.” The free Apps are available on Google Play and the App Store.


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