New Jersey middle school students review the last meal served on the Titanic

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Jacqueline MacStudy:

What was my favorite part of the Titanic exhibit? Well, that’s a really hard question. I loved how right from the start, they engulfed you in the atmosphere with a greeting from the Captain of the R.M.S Titanic and some of its passengers. I also really enjoyed the photo shoot of us doing the famous “Jack and Rose” pose at the bow of the ship. As we walked into the hall, we were blown away by the most beautiful recreation of the dining room. As we took our seats, we were welcomed by another school and their two students. I was really nervous to eat a ten course meal with foods that I never knew existed. I promised myself to try everything, and that was one of the best promises I ever made to myself; the food was exquisite. Unbeknown to me, the best part was waiting just behind me…the museum! As we entered the museum, the first things we saw were the pictures of the Titanic from its creation. As we continued through the museum, we saw a variety of actual artifacts from the Titanic. It is one thing to read about or see them in a book, but it is a truly awesome thing to see in real life. I also really enjoyed the giant iceberg that I got to touch, write my name on, and even compete with my teacher to see who can keep their hand on it the longest. We tied! This was truly the greatest experience of my life, and I would never change it for the world. These memories of the reenacting of the Titanic as well as viewing actual artifacts that had been recovered are things that I will cherish forever.

Zaniyah Womack:

My experience at the Liberty Science Center was simply amazing. I wasn’t sure what to expect but as I walked into the lobby, I was fascinated by the decorations and the well mannered people. I felt very welcomed by the tour guides in the lobby, and loved to learn that they were actually characters from the ship! When I walked into the dinner room, I was staggered by the soft classical music being played and the ornate decorations of the room. Is this really what the first class passengers experienced? It seemed too fancy to be on a ship! The scent of the food touched my nose as I walked onto the exhibit. At that moment I didn’t know whether I was excited to observe the exhibit or have dinner. As I walked through the exhibit, I was shocked by the realistic artifacts that were displayed. I’ve never seen the movie but the exhibit gave me a very understanding visual, and really made me want to go and watch it as soon as I could. One part I really enjoyed was the video that explained the science behind why the ship split in two. it. After visiting the exhibit, my stomach caught butterflies when they announced that everyone should make their way back to their seats. I knew that the first course meal was about to be served. I hadn’t heard of any of the foods on the menu so I was very fascinated to taste everything from the time period. Although, I had allergies the chefs were very considerate and made sure I was getting the right meal for all 10 courses. This was the fanciest dinner I’ve ever been to! I am very honored to have been chosen to attend the dinner. I would like to say thank you for inviting me to the dinner. I am very appreciative to have experienced this event.

Dante Robinson [left] and Zaniyah Womack [right], students from University Heights Charter School, Newark with Chef Donatella Arpaia [center] at Liberty Science Center’s Titanic Dinner

Dante Robinson:

My trip to the Liberty Science Center was truly exquisite. As I approached the building, I was impressed by the IMAX theater. The sheer size of the museum captivated me and I could not wait to get inside. I had never been to the Liberty Science Center before, so I anticipated it to be astonishing and a trip I would never forget. I was certainly not disappointed. I entered the Titanic exhibit and was struck with curiosity. The remnants of the ship such as the telephone, the jewelry and other artifacts really shocked me, because they survived the tides of time and were preserved beautifully. I was really blown away when I got the chance to touch the ice that represented the water temperature the night of the infamous ship’s sinking. It made me imagine how the passengers who suffered an agonizing death felt while drowning. I questioned the respect of the upper class towards the lower class when I saw the ratio of upper class passengers to lower class passengers who lost their lives. How can you put a price on a human life? It infuriated me to think that the third class had such a miniscule chance of survival as opposed to the more wealthy passengers. While the exhibit stirred a mix of emotions, the dinner was nothing but fun. The ten course meal was made up of ten of the most superb dishes I have ever had the honor of tasting. My personal favorite was the filet mignon. I am honestly indebted to the Liberty Science Center for giving me the opportunity to have such a fantastic evening.

Ryan Dratler:

On October 28th, I was invited by my 7th grade ELA teacher, Mrs. VanDeursen, to accompany her to an exhibition dinner at the Liberty Science Center. The museum was celebrating the grand opening of a new exhibition, the Titanic: Artifact Exhibition. My opinions on the exhibit are as follows. The first thing I feel stands out is the sheer amount of text to read. This exhibit features a lot of text and because of this I feel it is aimed for older audiences, such as teenagers or adults. The one feature that I feel is extremely kid friendly is the “real life miniature iceberg” that is sustained at a constant temperature of about 28 degrees freezing. It allowed me to be able to touch and feel how cold the water was the night of the sinking. This “gimmick” would be very cool for a young child (no pun intended). One thing I also liked about the exhibit, besides the artifacts it contained which were quite amazing to look at in person, was the giving of a ticket with a person listed on it, and the discovery of whether or not you survived near the end of the walkthrough. I found this fun and liked being able to learn a little bit about each passenger. While I am unsure as to whether the museum will be doing the boarding passes following the dinner, or if it was a one-time thing, I do hope they include the feature.

Robert R. Lazar Middle School students Ryan Dratler [left], Jacqueline MacStudy [center], and teacher Deirdre VanDeursen [right] posing on the bow of the Titanic before dinner

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