If you (and the kids) love aviation and adventure, then fly on over to Wilmington and the Brandywine Valley’s American Helicopter Museum and Education Center. The museum’s mission is to preserve rotary-wing aviation history, educate society, and inspire future generations to reach for the clouds (literally).
The museum has more than 30 helicopters on display, from the 1957 hydro-gyro glider that takes off from the water with the assistance of a boat to the V‑22 Osprey which combines the vertical capabilities of a helicopter and the high‑speeds of an airplane. And should you have your own helicopter, you can literally fly over to the museum. It is located on the north side of Brandywine Airport and has its own helipad, ramp and runway access adjacent to the museum.
In addition to checking out its impressive helicopter collection, you can celebrate the pioneers of aviation with these 2020 family-friendly events:
Open Cockpit Day
April 5, 12 pm-5 pm
Want the inside scoop and behind the scenes secrets? Make plans to check out Open Cockpit Day! The doors and canopies to many of the museum’s helicopters will be open, allowing visitors the opportunity to view and interact with their rarely seen interiors (free with Museum admission).
Annual Gala: “A Night at the Stage Door Canteen”
May 2, 5pm-10pm
For this year's annual gala, the museum will be celebrating the 1940's swing era with an open bar, hot and cold hors d’oeuvres, dinner, great music, and more! Enjoy a great night out while supporting the museum's important educational work.
June 21, 10 am-3 pm
This Father’s Day bring the whole family out for an exciting day featuring vintage cars and motorcycles, food trucks, inflatable games, a beer garden (of course), and more. For an additional charge take dad up in the helicopter for a scenic ride above town!
World Helicopter Day
August 16, 12 pm-5 pm
Celebrate World Helicopter Day with featured medevac helicopters, and come out to in honor of the hard work of first responders. Free with museum admission, free admission for first responders.
October 24, 5 pm-7 pm
Pull out all your tricks for some great treats! Have a spook-tastic time with craft activities, Halloween movies, snacks and, of course, trick-or-treating.
November 11, 10am-5pm
The museum will honor veterans for their service with free admission to the Museum.
December 12, 10am – 1 pm
Santa lets the reindeer rest for the big day and instead arrives via helicopter! Grab your cameras and make your plans to visit with the Jolly Old Elf himself.
Noon Year’s Eve
December 31, 11 am -1 pm
Ring in the new year a little early with kid-friendly science activities and a 12pm helicopter ball drop.
In addition to the awesome events throughout the year, the museum also offers helicopter rides!
2020 rides will take place: May 9 & 23, June 21, during FamilyFest, July 11 & 25, August 8 & 22, September 12 & 26 and December 12