Check out HudsonAlpha’s unique outdoor exhibit in Huntsville

This can be fun for all ages. Photo via Emily Kent for The Bama Buzz

Want to learn more about DNA? Easy. Head to HudsonAlpha‘s McMillian Park in Huntsville and enjoy a stroll through Genome Walk. Here, you’ll learn about all of the human chromosomes. Read on for how you can check this out.

HudsonAlpha, McMillian Park + Genome Walk

Checking out the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology. Photo via Emily Kent for The Bama Buzz

What’s HudsonAlpha, you might ask? If you don’t know, HudsonAlpha is a leader in biotechnology and genomic research. Cool, right?

HudsonAlpha’s campus is located in Huntsville, specifically in Cummings Research Park.

Did you know Cummings Research Park is the second largest research park in the United States and fourth largest in the world?

HudsonAlpha is complete with McMillian Park, added in 2010 as a part of the campus expansion project. Through the park, you’ll find a path shaped in a symbolic double helix. There are markers to represent each of the 24 human chromosomes. This is the Genome Walk.

“This walk is a way to tie together something the public could relate to and what we do at HudsonAlpha.”

—Danny Windham, Chief Operating Officer, HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology

How to find the Genome Walk

You’ll find the double helix path in McMillian Park. It is open to the public, so come one, come all!

Fun fact: McMillian Park is named for HudsonAlpha’s co-founder—Lonnie McMillian.

I parked in the visitor parking at HudsonAlpha.

It is interactive

Have you been yet? Photo via Emily Kent for The Bama Buzz

This path is fun (and educational) for all ages. For a 20-something who clearly doesn’t work in biotechnology, I enjoyed reading all about the chromosomes.

Are the markers losing your attention? I get it. Download the free GenomeCache app for an interactive experience. It’s a scavenger hunt through the double helix path—who doesn’t love a good scavenger hunt?

The app uses clues, fun facts and trivia questions for some added learning. You know how much I love a good fun fact, so of course I downloaded.

You’ll learn all about your DNA

This would be a great trail for runners, bikers or walkers like me! Photo via Emily Kent for The Bama Buzz

I’ve always blamed my best and worst qualities on my DNA, nonchalantly. I’ve even given credit to my DNA for my love of the Crimson Tide—which if you grew up in an Alabama household like me, you’ll know there isn’t much of a choice there.

What I didn’t know was how much your DNA truly did account for…including your ear wax type (yes, you read that correctly) and if you like or dislike Brussels Sprouts.

Know of something unique to Huntsville? Let us know by tagging @thebamabuzz on social or emailing

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Emily Kent
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