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With the weather turning, it’s time to head inside (with masks on!) and check out these terrific exhibits at Seattle-area museums. There’s something here that’s bound to pique your interest, from authentic Disney movie costumes to Leonardo da Vinci’s flying machines.
‘Cruisin’ Around Washington’
Learn about our state’s fossils through the elaborate and scientifically accurate work of Alaska-based artist Ray Troll. The small but mighty “Cruisin’ Around Washington” exhibit at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture closes Oct. 10, so check it out soon. While you’re there, take a peek at what researchers are working on. The whole premise of the Burke is slightly wacky — the museum puts its staff on exhibit. Through big glass windows, you can watch researchers at work, maybe mounting butterflies or cleaning sea otter skulls.
Through Oct. 10; Burke Museum, 300 15th Ave. N.E., Seattle; $14-$22; 206-543-7907, burkemuseum.org
‘Dines Carlsen: In His Own Manner’
Last year, the National Nordic Museum received a gift of more than 900 works by American painter Dines Carlsen. Dines was the only child of well-known Danish-born artist Emil Carlsen; he was home-schooled and his father taught him art. After his father’s death, Dines branched out and developed his own style. This exhibit features a changing selection of works from the museum’s collection.
Through Oct. 24; National Nordic Museum, 2655 N.W. Market St., Seattle; $10-20; 206-789-5707, nordicmuseum.org
‘Crossing Boundaries: Portraits of a Transgender West’
Transgender people are part of the history of the American West, but their stories were kept hushed up. An original exhibit at the Washington State History Museum introduces some transgender pioneers from 1860 to 1940, before the concept of transgender even existed. There was Mrs. Nash, for example, who did General George Custer’s laundry and was married to a top aide. It wasn’t until after her death that it was discovered she didn’t conform to gender norms.
Through Dec. 10; Washington State History Museum, 1911 Pacific Ave., Tacoma; $11-$14; 253-272-3500, washingtonhistory.org
‘Da Vinci — Inventions’
Leonardo da Vinci was an artist, scientist, engineer and overall genius — the ultimate Renaissance man. This exhibit at the Museum of History & Industry explores his ideas and the scientific and artistic principles behind them. You’ll see models of his flying inventions, replicas of his notebooks and machines you can test out yourself.
Through Jan. 3, 2022; MOHAI, 860 Terry Ave. N., Seattle; $17-$22; 206-324-1126, mohai.org
‘Chief Seattle Days’
Chief Seattle Days, established in 1911, is an annual celebration honoring the famous Suquamish chief and namesake of the city of Seattle. It’s held every August, at Chief Sealth’s gravesite in Suquamish, across the street from the Suquamish Museum. Because of COVID, this year’s event was scaled back and limited to tribal members and their households. In previous years, the celebration has featured canoe races, drumming, dancing and a salmon bake. This exhibit includes historical photographs of this longstanding tradition.
Through Jan. 9; Suquamish Museum, 6861 N.E. South St., Suquamish; $3-$5; 360-394-8499, suquamish.nsn.us/suquamish-museum
‘Stranger Than Fiction’
Did you know that extremely low air pressure will cause your blood to boil? Doctors and researchers had to solve this problem, not to mention the extreme cold and lack of oxygen, as humans began adventuring higher and higher into space. “Stranger Than Fiction” at the Museum of Flight uses a comic-book format to tell the stories of the daredevils who performed risky aerospace experiments on themselves. Not for the faint of heart.
Through Feb. 6; Museum of Flight, 9404 E. Marginal Way S., Seattle; $17-$25; 206-764-5700, museumofflight.org
‘Heroes and Villains: The Art of the Disney Costume’
There’s everything from the outfit Julie Andrews wore as Mary Poppins to Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent gown. “Heroes and Villains” at the Museum of Pop Culture includes more than 70 original items featured in Disney movies. You’ll see familiar ball gowns, capes, tiaras, wigs and glass slippers at this family-friendly exhibit, and learn about the process of creating these iconic costumes.
Through February; MoPOP, 325 Fifth Ave. N., Seattle; $32-$39; 206-770-2700, mopop.org
‘I Am Filipino’
The first Filipinos arrived in the continental United States 434 years ago as crew members aboard a Spanish galleon. To commemorate the date that the ship docked (Oct. 18), Filipino American History Month is celebrated in October. It’s the perfect time to check out a special exhibit at the Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience about Filipino American history and identity.
Ongoing; Wing Luke Museum, 719 S. King St., Seattle; $10-$17; 206-623-5124, wingluke.org