Leonardo da Vinci was one of the most prolific inventors of the Renaissance era, producing designs that were hundreds of years ahead of their time. Now through Labor Day, 2017, more than 40 of his inventions are on display at the Aerospace Museum of California in Sacramento.
Many of the exhibits are hands-on, and visitors can turn cranks and watch the machines in motion. Others are for display only, but show the innovation of da Vinci. In the case of the hang glider, da Vinci's design hangs next to a modern design, and the similarities are evident.
Roxanne Yonn, director of the Aerospace Museum of California, said the exhibit provides a unique opportunity to learn about the way da Vinci designed machines to improve daily tasks, such as a crane and a water-powered saw, to those designed for warfare, such as a tank reminiscent of a turtle.
School groups and individual visitors alike will enjoy learning about the 14th-century inventions, and once they are done seeing the da Vinci exhibit, the rest of the displays in the Aerospace Museum await.
Inside, multiple aircraft hang from the ceiling and are on display on the floor, and numerous engines are on stands showing the evolution of aircraft power from World War I to modern times. Informational placards along the walls highlight the history of aviation, with exhibits on the Tuskegee Airmen of World War II and women in flight being favorites.
Outside, historic aircraft are on display ranging from America's first jet fighter to a Czechoslovakian MiG and an F-14 Tomcat of "Top Gun" fame. Also on display are civilian aircraft, including a cargo plane, and several of the aircraft are open on a rotating schedule to allow visitors a closer look.
Location: 3200 Freedom Park Drive in McClellan Park
Hours: Monday 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
Admission: $15 for adults 18-64, $12 for children ages 6-17 and seniors 65 and older. Children 5 and younger, active military and museum members get free admission. Group tour admission is $10.