We absolutely loved having the museum all to ourselves and the other campers! Exhibits we have experienced visit after visit could be appreciated more thoroughly without worrying about crowds or missing a showtime. It was a lot of fun to wander the museum at leisure and spend a lot of time in the places that we enjoyed the most. In addition to the permanent exhibits, we also got the chance to check out the interactive Lost Egypt special exhibit on display at The Franklin Institute until August 28th. And since we were at the museum at night, we were able to do some pretty incredible star gazing with the Observatory's giant telescope (it was very cool to see Jupiter and some of its moons, as well as the Orion Nebula). A show in the Fels Planetarium was a great end-of-night transition into sleeping time (with the early start and extended visit time the next morning, we were glad that Lights Out came before midnight).
In the morning, a delicious continental breakfast is served, and campers are treated to a show in the breathtaking IMAX theater (we got a chance to see the brand new National Parks Adventure - wow!). The Sci-Store opens for souvenir purchasing at 8:00, and the program official ends at 9:30am with enough time to move all your gear out of the museum before it is open to the public. The day doesn't have to be over though! Campers are invited to stay until noon to continue exploring the museum (there is a special Camp-In) flat fee of $10 to park in the museum's garage overnight until noon).
And even when the whole amazing experience is over, it's still not actually over. Every camper ages 13 and under receives a special Souvenir Patch, and it gives them FREE ADMISSION FOR A YEAR (make sure you hang onto it, because you'll need to bring it for every museum visit to redeem the free admission)! We love this added bonus to the Camp-In, since you know that once a camper has spent the night at The Franklin Institute, they are going to want to come back to experience how fun science is over and over again.