The Lehigh Valley is full of museums and other cultural sites which make excellent family field trips. At Adoptions From the Heart, our Allentown adoption agents believe it’s important to consistently engage our families in educational experiences. These experiences provide opportunities to not only learn new things, but to bond together. We recently visited America on Wheels museum in Allentown, which features rotating exhibitions of museum-quality automobiles and hosts a variety of educational events. If you’ve got children with an interest in cars, you absolutely must make some time for a weekend family field trip here. Some of our favorite aspects of America on Wheels include:
They’re Only Original Once, Survivor Cars
In this exhibit, unrestored original classic cars are on display. This means that these automobiles are in their original condition, including the original paint, seats, and interior parts. Viewing these classic cars allows us to take a step back into the past and learn about how cars used to be manufactured in the United States.
According to the museum, there are six qualifications for survivor cars:
- Original paint
- Protected from the elements inside of a garage
- Original interiors
- 100% original equipment, including the spare tire
- No damage to the interior fabric
This exhibit features 12 completely unrestored and original vehicles.
Kids’ Car Service & Restoration Center
Designed for kids aged 12 and under, the Kids’ Car Service & Restoration Center helps build automobile skills which will surely come in handy after your kids have gotten their licenses. For particularly enthusiastic kids, this could even be a formative experience for a future career as a mechanic. Here, a fabricated car is used to teach about how engines work.
According to the museum, there are several goals in mind for kids who engage in this experience:
- Develop gross and fine motor skills, as well as hand-eye coordination
- Develop organizational and problem-solving skills
- Build teamwork skills
- Gain an understanding of basic scientific automotive concepts
- Encourages discussion and debate
2018 Summer Camp
For kids with an intense interest in automobiles, the America on Wheels summer camp is an incredibly enriching experience. Here, your son or daughter can nurture their interest and learn all about what goes into building and maintaining a great automobile, including how they’re designed, and built, how engines and other internal components function, the history of automobiles in the United States, and a variety of other educational topics. We’re sure that some future mechanics are molded in this summer camp each year.
In 2018, there are two summer camp sessions offered:
- July 24-27 from 9 am to noon
- July 31-Aug 3 from 9 am to noon
American on Wheels hosts a variety of educational and entertaining events year-round. Some of the upcoming events we’re looking forward to include:
2018 Lecture Series
There are six upcoming monthly lectures scheduled:
- Motorcycles of Pennsylvania on May 19
- 50 Years of Das Awkscht Fescht on June 16
- Upholstery & Design on August 18
- History of Henry M. Leland (co-founder of Cadillac and Lincoln car companies) on September 15
- Hydrogen-Powered Vehicles on October 6
Heavy Equipment Petting Zoo
American on Wheels may specialize in traditional automobiles, but the Heavy Equipment Petting Zoo will provide the opportunity to touch and learn about a variety of construction trucks. This event is on May 5 and open to all ages, but kids under 12 are admitted for free.
Hoods Up Weekend
On June 16 and 17, hoods will be up on selected cars. This makes a great event for fathers day, where you can look under the hood of some classic cars and learn about their interior mechanical workings.