Infamously large and quick, airplanes are notoriously difficult to catch, which is why they must be observed in captivity in museums or tarmac zoos. Get a close-up view of a rare steel bird with today's Groupon to the American Airlines C.R. Smith Museum. Choose between two options:
- For $6, you get two adult tickets and two children's tickets to the American Airlines C.R. Smith Museum (up to a $12 value).
- For $35, you get a Family Annual Membership to the American Airlines C.R. Smith Museum (up to a $75 value).
The American Airlines C.R. Smith Museum's educational exhibits escort visitors through the history of American Airlines and commercial aviation. Step through the entryway, crowned with a large, sleek globe denoting some of American Airlines' destinations, and view a history wall teeming with significant artifacts, electronic quiz games, celebrities' favorite luggage tags, and audio exhibits. Full-scale aircraft engine models show guests the nuances of complicated machinery, and a rare Douglas DC-3 Airliner, Flagship Knoxville, shines above the museum in its glassed-in hangar area, daring visitors to meet its steely gaze.
At the museum’s flight lab, visitors of all ages learn the fundamentals of aerodynamics using wind tunnels, computer games, and interactive displays, or fly over the San Francisco Bay in a two-seat, fixed-base Beechcraft flight simulator (call ahead for flight simulator availability). Duck into a digital theater for The Spirit of American, a film about the history of commercial aviation and the spirit winds that miraculously deliver planes to their destinations. A special children's exhibit, Cyberchase - the Chase is On!, based on the PBS math cartoon, leads kids on crime-fighting adventures and runs through September 3. Visit the museum for a day or join a Family Annual Membership, whose perks include a year of free admission, an official membership card and pin, and 100 American Airlines AAdvantage Miles.
American Airlines C.R. Smith Museum
In 1934, many flight passengers still traveled by bald eagle, which was dangerous, had few amenities, and was illegal. But along came C.R. Smith, president of American Airlines for 34 years, who pioneered innovations in commercial aviation that improved passenger comfort as well as plane capacity. Today, the American Airlines C.R. Smith Museum honors his legacy with hundreds of historical artifacts, photographs, and full-scale airline engines. The museum's centerpiece is a rare 1940 Douglas DC-3 airliner, the Flagship Knoxville—a fully restored testament to C.R. Smith's contributions to the industry. Other perennial attractions include a flight simulator and The Spirit of American, a film that documents the history of commercial aviation, featuring panoramic aerial photography and rare footage of Icarus nearing the sun.