Duke World of Energy: Learn About What Powers The Upstate

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Do you have a young one with an inquisitive mind? Bring them to the Duke World of Energy where they can learn how the electricity that keeps the lights on at home is generated and brought to local houses and businesses.

Did we mention this exhibit is FREE?

We know our readers love free things to do near Greenville so we visited the Duke World of Energy and we’re bringing you all the information you need to plan your own visit soon!

Looking for more Free Things to do in the Upstate? Here’s our list of free and low-cost things to do near Greenville, SC!

Located on the southern shore of beautiful Lake Keowee, The Oconee Nuclear Plant provides energy to nearly 2 million homes. There is a multitude of steps that go into producing so much energy, and families can learn all about it at the power plant’s educational center.

Inside the Duke World of Energy

The Duke World of Energy is a free hands-on exhibit. Visitors will learn how electricity is generated at the plant and how the surrounding lakes contribute. You’ll start off with a short film, followed by a variety of interactive educational displays about energy production at the plant. The experience takes about 30-45 minutes.

As you enter each exhibit room, the presentation is started by an interactive touchpad. As you move from room to room you will learn about the process the plant uses to create the power that flows into homes. The way the exhibit is set up, in multiple rooms will keep kids from toddler to school-age entertained. About halfway through, you’ll find a huge picture window overlooking the power plant – a perfect photo opportunity. I was surprised to learn that this is the fifth-largest nuclear plant in the country.

The exhibits towards the end seemed to be the stars of the show for my children. My son loved the security display which features half of a car and the mirrored tool they use to check underneath cars entering the facility. The last two rooms – my daughter’s favorite – feature a simulated outdoor space, complete with taxidermy animals and an adjoining room that looks like a home. She loved looking out the window back into the “outdoor” room and waving to us.

The topography map is really neat – you can see the entire Jocassee Gorges, the Foothills Trail, the SC State Parks near there, and Lake Jocassee and Lake Keowee. These kinds of maps are always fascinating!

Nature Trail and More at Duke Energy

After visiting the World of Energy exhibit, head outside to the quarter-mile nature trail by the lake. You’ll find a covered picnic shelter, a fishing pier, and even a butterfly garden that’s open during the warmer months. Unfortunately, there is a shortage of dining options nearby, so it’s a good idea to plan ahead and bring a picnic.

We sat on the dock to eat lunch and finish our homeschool work and it was very relaxing. There’s a path that winds its way down to a small beach as well where you can hang out and enjoy the beautiful view. Stay off the helipad though, as the signs say!

You can also fish on the pier if you like. This is such a great way to spend a leisurely afternoon and a fun field trip. The view is breathtaking, and you just might learn something while you’re there.

Don’t forget to check the Duke Energy website for events. In the past, The World of Energy has hosted several community events, including a National Hunting, an Orchid event, an Fishing Day event, and a home school day.

FREE Special Events at Duke World of Energy

Wednesdays at the World of Energy: Summer 2023

Wednesdays at the World of Energy are one hour-long STEM programs for kids ages 5 through 12, beginning at 10 am on specific Wednesdays in the summer. Program are free.

June 14: Brainstorming about the brain
June 21: Critter Keeper
June 28: Magic Show
July 12: Beat the Heat with “super cool science”

Outdoor Movie: Finding Nemo

July 21st, 2023: World of Energy is open until 8 pm, and the movie starts at 8:50 (dusk). Bring a blanket and chairs.

Want to Visit Duke World of Energy?

Duke World Of Energy
7812 Rochester Highway | Seneca, SC 29672
800.777.1004 (option 1)

Open 10 am-4 pm
Wednesday through Friday
Please confirm the hours before you head to the World Of Energy.

This article was originally written by Melanie Coblentz and has been updated by the Kidding Around Team.

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About the Author
How does Kidding Around® bring readers high-quality and up-to-date content month after month and season after season? We have a dedicated team of writers and editors who regularly update our fabulous content to keep it current and relevant for our readers. This team combs lists of events, heads out into the community to experience new Upstate offerings, and communicates with local businesses. Many of our updated articles and event lists, like this one, reflect the contributions and hard work of multiple Kidding Around® team members.

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