The National Corvette Museum continues to make lemonade out of the lemons that literally fell beneath its feet last year.
Museum officials have released details about what they’re calling “Thunderdome,” a unique multimedia experience that will allow visitors to “live through” the collapse of the Skydome floor that sent eight Corvettes falling into the bowels of the earth in February 2014.
Thunderdome, designed by a Florida company called Creative Arts Unlimited, is actually just one part of an exhibit that will teach visitors about caves, sinkholes, karst landscapes, and the Corvettes damaged or destroyed by the sinkhole inside the museum.
Exact opening date hasn’t been set, but Thunderdome may be ready to greet its first guests by this fall.
Thunderdome is under construction now – it’s basically a miniature replica of the Skydome and about 15 guests at a time will enjoy a “sensorama” experience of sound and animation producing the sensation of being below the structure’s floor when the collapse occurred. It will give visitors the experience of witnessing the collapse, from inside a simulated cave below a simulated Skydome floor.
If you’re a little claustrophobic, you can opt out of the Thunderdome experience and enter the museum by a separate entrance, but Thunderdome patrons brave enough will enter through the tunnel that currently connects the Enthusiast Area to the Skydome, which will be modified to look like the many caves below the Kentucky ground.
We were disappointed when the sinkhole had to be permanently closed up because it would have cost too much to leave it open, but we think the Thunderdome is a great compromise that will prove to be very popular with tourists.
And we know how popular seeing the sinkhole proved to be last year, with a record 251,258 visitors passing through.
NASCAR fans will also enjoy a new exhibit coming to the museum on May 15, NASCAR: From Moonshine to Finish Line, telling the history of stock car racing with 14 cars. Believe it or not, a 1940 Ford standard business coupe, similar to the kind once modified to haul moonshine, will be on display, too.
Some of the competition cars on display will include a 1953 Corvette NASCAR, described as the earliest known Corvette race car and one of two built to give the Corvette high-performance credentials; the 1963 Chevrolet Impala SS driven by Junior Johnson and known as the “Mystery Motor” car for its experimental 427-cu.in. Mk II V-8; the 1972 Chevrolet Monte Carlo that helped Benny Parsons capture the 1973 Winston Cup championship; the bubble-back 1986/87 Pontiac Aero driven by Richard Petty; the 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo finished in Wheaties livery and driven by “The Intimidator,” Dale Earnhardt; and a 2008 Chevrolet Impala SS driven by Dale Earnhardt, Jr. to a win at the 2008 Bud Shootout at
[VIDEO] A New Concrete Slab Covers Half of the Corvette Museum’s SkyDome
[VIDEO] Corvette Museum’s Sinkhole Also Brings Record Visitors to the Corvette Assembly Plant
[VIDEO] Sinkhole in the Corvette Museum’s SkyDome