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About The Museum

Museum Exterior The College Park Aviation Museum opened in 1998 and is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. The museum is a 27,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility located on the grounds of the world's oldest continuously operating airport in College Park, MD. The airport was founded in 1909 when Wilbur Wright came here to give flight instruction to the first military aviators. Visitors to the museum step into an open 1 1/2 story exhibit space, which highlights the display of unique aircraft and artifacts and tells the story of the airport's many firsts in flight to today. The museum gallery contains historic and reproduction aircraft associated with the history of the airfield, as well as hands-on activities and interpretive areas for children of all ages. Changing exhibits and new programs every month keep visitors coming back for more.

The goal of the College Park Aviation Museum is to research, preserve, interpret and promote the history and collections of the College Park Airport, and early World War I-era aviation in general, by operating the site as a public museum providing educational exhibits, special events, programs and tours for the general public, school-age community and tourists.

The College Park Aviation Museum does not have any indoor eating facilities, but during pleasant weather guests are welcome to eat picnic lunches at umbrella tables on our outdoor balcony, which overlooks the airport runway.

The College Park Airport, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, also features a 1919 airmail hangar and Compass Rose on the grounds. The airport runway is just outside the glass windows of the museum – be sure to watch for a take-off or landing as today's pilots take to the sky!

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