Keeper of the Plans

Challenging new spy experience to open at Exploration Place


A new interactive exhibit at Exploration Place will test your ability to spy, 007-style.

“Top Secret: License to Spy” is the museum’s newest traveling exhibit, set to open Saturday.

On entering the exhibit, you’ll pick up a paper with a scenario and six suspects — then, as you travel through the interactive exhibit, you’ll have to solve a mystery.

It’s a challenge even for adults — as you learn the science behind cracking locks, code-breaking, phone-tapping and more.

Then, of course, the exhibit’s crown jewel: A laser maze where people have to sneak through the room without tripping any of the laser security beams.

All of this may seem like pure fun, but Christina Bluml, director of marketing for Exploration Place, said it’s strikingly similar to the scientific process.

You do surveillance (research), make a guess as to who might have committed the crime and then see if your guess is borne out by further espionage.

The exhibition opens Saturday.

Exploration Place itself is in the midst of a solid year, according to Bluml.

In December, about 25,000 people came to the science museum — the most guests it’s had in December since opening in 2000.

“People just loved Toytopia,” Bluml said, referring to last fall’s traveling exhibit. “It’s been an excellent year for us.”

“Top Secret: License to Spy” is on exhibit through April 28, after which “The Science of Ripley’s Believe It Or Not” is expected to take over in May.

“Top Secret: License to Spy”

What: Interactive exhibit in which guests act as a “secret agent” trying to unravel a mystery using old-school spy techniques.

Where: Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd.

Hours: Exhibit opens Saturday. Museum open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and noon-5 p.m. Sundays.

Admission: Regular admission applies: $10.50 for adults 12-64, $9 for seniors 65+ and $7 for youth 3-11. Children 2 and under are admitted free.

More information:, 316-660-0600

Matt Riedl covers arts and entertainment news for the Wichita Eagle and has done so since 2015. He maintains the Keeper of the Plans blog on Facebook, dedicated to keeping Wichitans abreast of all things fun.