Mount Washington has announced plans for a totally revamped visitor center to open in 2014.
According to the press release:
Mount Washington Observatory chose Jeff Kennedy Associates, Inc. of Somerville, Mass. to lead the redesign of the mountaintop museum. The new museum will feature a collection of high-tech exhibits that tell the winter story of Mount Washington. Visitors will be able to sit in the cockpit of a snowcat and pilot the machine up the mountain. A large, five monitor display will present interactive, panoramic “clear day” views in all seasons. An exhibit depicting the 1930’s Observatory will feature artifacts and instruments from that era, including the very anemometer that was used to measure the “Big Wind” of April 12, 1934.
“From the moment we became involved, I knew that this would become one my all-time favorite projects, but the challenge of figuring out how to immerse visitors in the extreme conditions of a Mount Washington winter was, at the outset, a somewhat daunting assignment,” says Jeff Kennedy, principal of Jeff Kennedy Associates. “With the design now complete and production about to get underway, I am confident that the new museum, which is media rich and highly participatory, will provide an experience that visitors can engage with nowhere else on Earth.”
One of the most compelling aspects of the new museum will be the high definition winter video footage captured by documentarian Tom Guilmette of Franklin, Massachusetts. Guilmette was given the difficult task of capturing on video the essence of the Mount Washington winter experience. He was embedded with Observatory staff for nearly a month, following the day-to-day work of Observatory meteorologists, capturing unique weather phenomena and battling the elements in the name of education. In the end, Guilmette was successful in shooting extensive, frigid, other worldly footage that will serve as the audio-visual centerpiece of Extreme Mount Washington.