USAA opens Fort Innovate in San Antonio this weekend – mySA

If you ever wanted to help your kid repair a satellite in space, you can get your chance to do that and more at USAA‘s science-oriented attraction, Fort Innovate, this weekend. 

Fort Innovate opened in San Antonio this Friday, June 17, and we will be open throughout the weekend at the Doseum at 2800 Broadway. The air-conditioned trailer outside the Doseum lets kids fix a satellite in virtual space using VR headsets, spot animals that escaped from the zoo with VR goggles, fly virtual drones and play with putty. 

Some kids used night vision to spot animals that escaped from the zoo. 

Some kids used night vision to spot animals that escaped from the zoo. 

Steven Santana | MySA

Putty, says USAA’s lead communications director Laura Propp, was actually a defunct product the military developed while trying to create an alternative to rubber. Now, she says, it’s a popular children’s toy. But at Fort Innovate, kids can learn about its various other uses. Fort Innovate’s activities all center around science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). 

The putty station teaches kids about the malleable substance's various uses. 

The putty station teaches kids about the malleable substance’s various uses. 

Steven Santana | MySA

This is why USAA’s Fort Innovate attracted iCarly star and STEM advocate Miranda Cosgrove, who has been promoting the attraction

Kids were challenged to fly drones through various virtual terrain. 

Kids were challenged to fly drones through various virtual terrain. 

Steven Santana | MySA

Fort Innovate was Propp’s brain child, which she says embodies one of the founding principles of USAA, which is celebrating 100 years serving military members and their families in San Antonio, the nation and globally. 

“Innovate is crucial to USAA. It’s how we were founded back in 1922 — on the idea of innovative thinking,” Propp said. “It’s been key to who we are as a company.”

Not all of Fort Innovation is so high-tech. This coin press allows you create a souvenir coin out of a penny. 

Not all of Fort Innovation is so high-tech. This coin press allows you create a souvenir coin out of a penny. 

Steven Santana | MySA

This is actually Fort Innovate’s second stop on its tour across the U.S. It first stopped at the Children’s Museum of Phoenix. It will be open Friday, June 17, until 6 p.m.; Saturday, June 18, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Sunday, June 19, from noon to 5 p.m. The lab is free to enter. 

There is plenty to do inside of Fort Innovation

There is plenty to do inside of Fort Innovation

Steven Santana | MySA

Fort Innovate will leave San Antonio next week, making its next stop at the Glazer Children’s Museum and Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park in Tampa Florida. Fort Innovate will also stop at Philadelphia, New York City and more. Find out more at the website.

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