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The Science of Big Time Entertainment

By Justin Sondak in Arts & Entertainment on May 24, 2007 7:25PM

CSIMSI.jpgCSI: The Experience, a new exhibit based on the phenomenally successful crime drama, opens this weekend at the Museum of Science & Industry and is slated for seven other cities through 2010. It’s sure to be a big hit. Now that blockbuster exhibitions barely raise an eyebrow and TV shows are more complex and intellectually stimulating than ever, we’re hardly surprised that the MSI would turn to CBS for family-friendly summer fun.

In case you’re unfamiliar with the prime time franchise cash cow, the CSI programs track Crime Scene Investigators, forensic scientists deciphering evidence so cops in Las Vegas, New York and Miami (and wherever the network decides go to next) can nab bad guys. The televised and real life CSIs have become tremendously popular since the September 11 attacks, as legions of fans imagine David Caruso or William Petersen uncovering the trail to Bin Laden.

The exhibit lets visitors assess crime scenes and apply scientific principles and CSI techniques to catch hypothetical assassins. On “Forensic Saturdays,” the museum will offer a closer look at arson investigation, fingerprint analysis, entomology and drug chemistry. And six meticulously crafted miniature crime scenes, sent by a serial killer to taunt the investigators during Season 7, will be on display. If that last sentence made you geek out, might as well get your tickets now.

CSI: The Experience opens Friday at MSI Chicago and runs through September 3. Tickets are $14-19, discounts available for groups and city residents. More info at and

Photo via Fort Worth Museum of Science and History