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The Center for Decision Research celebrated the first anniversary of Mindworks, the world's first discovery center and lab dedicated to behavioral science, July 22-24 with a weekend of festivities at 224 S. Michigan Avenue. 

A record-setting 600+ visitors attended the celebration which featured a prize wheel, guided tours, a one-of-a-kind "compliment booth" and more. The anniversary celebration inspired the single busiest day and week in Mindworks history. During the anniversary weekend, more than 200 of these visitors participated in surveys and interactive studies to help advance the science of judgment and decision making. 

The anniversary weekend was a fitting capstone to Mindworks' successful first year in operation. Since the space first opened in summer 2021, Mindworks has welcomed more than 12,000 visitors from 53 countries, six continents, and all 50 U.S. states to participate in research studies and learn how to apply behavioral science insights to improve their lives, workplaces, and communities.


The weekend began Friday with a guided tour from Mindworks Chief Scientist James Dungan, and Research Assistant Andrea Rivera-Martinez hosted Spanish-language tours Friday and Saturday. Mindworks also recently debuted a new guide book (available at the front desk) with translations of exhibit signage in Spanish. 


Saxophone quartet Nois kicked off the day Saturday with a live performance. 


The weekend also featured a one-of-a-kind “compliment booth” encouraging visitors to express gratitude and appreciation for others. This interactive experience is based on behavioral science research by CDR Faculty Director Nicholas Epley and Stanford’s Xuan Zhao about the underrated value of giving and receiving compliments. 


All visitors had a chance to spin a prize wheel to win Mindworks merch, and a select few visitors won raffle prizes including: 

  • Tickets to the Art Institute of Chicago
  • Tickets to the Grant Park Music Festival
  • Tickets to the Museum of Illusions
  • Tickets to the Brookfield Zoo
  • Tickets to the Museum of Surgical Sciences
  • Gift card to Broadway in Chicago
  • C3 CityPASS
  • Bread and wine from The Exchange
  • And more!


Thank you to all of the visitors, staff members, prize donors, and musicians who helped make the anniversary weekend such a success!  

If you couldn't make it to the anniversary celebration, don't worry! Mindworks is open year-round at 224 S. Michigan Avenue in downtown Chicago. Admission is free and open to all. Mindworks is open Wednesday-Sunday 11am-5pm. Schedule your free visit today!