By Caroline Bleakley, Senior Online Editor - email
LAS VEGAS -- The Las Vegas Atomic Testing Museum is seeing a 25 percent increase in visitors in the wake of the radiation scare in Japan.
Tour guides at the museum have been doing more tours and talking to larger groups of visitors. Shortly after the power plant in Japan started having radiation leaks, the level of interest in the museum increased.
The artifacts in the museum, located at Flamingo and Paradise Roads, takes visitors back several decades to what the testing site in Nevada was all about. Jim Geiger who is visiting from Texas was curious.
"Just a little more detail on the history of what went on here, I remember. It wasn't a secret necessarily, but they didn't go out of their way to tell people they were testing atomic weapons," he said.
Geiger and his wife said the museum was a must see for them during their Las Vegas trip.
"We are museum buffs from way back and I worked in the nuclear industry for sometime and before that I worked in the aerospace industry," he said. The Geigers are just a few of many people who have stopped by the Atomic Testing Museum since the devastation struck Japan.
"This last week, our visitorship since the incident in Japan, has gone up about 25 percent which is pretty significant for us as a museum," said Allan Palmer, who is the museum's executive director.
He says more and more school groups are also visiting using what's happening overseas as a learning experience within the museum.
"On a normal day, on the weekend, we have maybe 120 people in. This last weekend we had 180. For us, as small museum, that's a pretty big increase," Palmer said.
"There were a lot of interactive exhibits, an interactive photography thing, you can push a button detonate a bomb and stuff like that," said Brian Gresko, a history teacher in Canada.
The people who work at the museum say visitors are asking a lot more questions in regards to what's happening in Japan.
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