Oakland is home to a vast and wide array of historical sites, exhibits, and museums. Among the many different places to visit on a fun weekend in Oakland, CA, is the Oakland Aviation Museum. The Oakland Aviation Museum, located at 8252 Earhart Rd, Oakland, CA 94621, is the best place to go if you want to learn more about the history of airplanes and aviation. Featuring aviation history that pertains to both Oakland and the world, you’re sure to have an engaging time.
One of the first things that you notice about the Oakland Aviation Museum is that the museum itself is located in an old aviation hangar. The exhibits are divided into groups of aviation history artifacts, actual decommissioned airplanes, and even a few special event exhibits. The permanent exhibits include exhibits on the Eighth Air Force, African American Aviation History, Women’s Aviation History, a collection of engines, and a General James Doolittle collection among many others.
The museum was founded in 1981as the “Western Aerospace Museum”. The first location of the museum was at Oakland International Airport’s Hangar 5 and was located in a small room. However, they were granted the usage of the Boeing School of Aeronautics Hangar, and the museum became what it is today.
The Oakland Museum also offers a wide array of different educational programs for local students to enjoy. Among those are resources for teachers, guided group tours for adults, school tours for field trips, and STEM-focused programs. They also feature tours of the massive Solent boat planes on Sundays, which include a meal, for the small fee of $7 for adults and $5 for children. They have also recently added a virtual reality exhibit, allowing you to get behind the controls of an F-18.
The Oakland Aviation Museum caters to both children and adults, with plenty to entertain both. There are plenty of kid-sized cockpits to pretend in, model train set displays, and activities like scavenger hunts that are held at various points in the year. One of the main attractions is when the museum holds an open cockpit day. On open cockpit days, visitors are allowed to actually set in the cockpits of different planes. Be sure to check their schedule before you visit as open cockpit days are infrequent and often just once a week.
The museum has a small staff, but they are known to be extremely friendly and courteous to visitors, often giving personal tours on slower days. Some of the staff are retired Air Force members and have many of their awards and own collections in the Oakland Museum. In general, most patrons were extremely pleased with their visit and had very few problems. It does seem to be the case that you will enjoy the museum a little more if you have an interest in airplanes, so keep that in mind.
The Oakland Aviation Museum is open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 AM to 4 PM and closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. However, they quit selling tickets at 3 PM, so you should be sure to get there in enough time to take in the whole museum.
Getting to Central Bay Roofing & Restoration from Oakland Aviation Museum
via CA-61 N
Take Earhart Rd and Langley St to CA-61 N/Doolittle Dr