Museum begins three-year campaign Oct. 15 to fund permanent ‘Discovery Room’

September 22nd, 2011

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Buy your tickets now for the first events in the Florida Museum of Natural History’s three-year fundraising campaign to create a permanent and expanded “Discovery Room” family activity area. The events are scheduled for Oct. 15, Nov. 16 and Feb. 24, 2012.

The campaign will fund the planning and construction of a 2,000-square-foot innovative family-friendly experience that fosters critical thinking, collaboration and creativity.

The museum’s goal is to raise $100,000 by February 2012 for planning and design of the activity area. The total campaign goal is $1 million, with the remaining funds used to construct the exhibit. (more…)

Popularity prompts museum to extend opening of ‘Discovery Room’ activity area

August 8th, 2011

Photos available

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The “Discovery Room,” a family-friendly activity area at the Florida Museum of Natural History, will remain open through Jan. 1, 2012, due to popular demand.

The museum also is considering converting the Discovery Room into a permanent exhibit open year-round.

“We hope to keep the Discovery Room open because of its popularity with our family visitors and to allow us to examine the effectiveness of different components for the larger, permanent exhibit we are in the initial stages of planning,” said Betty Dunckel, director of informal science education at the Florida Museum. (more…)

Florida Museum of Natural History to open popular ‘Discovery Room’ May 28

April 28th, 2011

Editor’s Note: A full schedule of activities follows this release

Photos available

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History will open its “Discovery Room,” a favorite area for visitors of all ages, at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 28.

Admission is free, and the room is open from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 1 to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. The activity area will remain open through Aug. 14. (more…)

Florida Museum of Natural History opens ‘Discovery Room’ June 21

June 14th, 2010

Photo available

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History opens its “Discovery Room” for guests of all ages from June 21- Aug. 22. The room is free and open every day until 4:30 p.m.

The activity space provides an opportunity for children and adults to learn about Florida’s natural habitats through hands-on activities, interactive displays, books, games and various scheduled programs. (more…)

Audubon Society, Smokey Bear to appear at Fla. Museum’s Discovery Room

July 21st, 2009

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Discover common birds of Florida and celebrate Smokey Bear’s 65th birthday at two upcoming Discovery Room events at the Florida Museum of Natural History.

Adam Kent, board member of the Alachua Audubon Society, serves as a guest “Dr. Discovery” Wednesday and Smokey the Bear will host a party in his honor Aug. 12. Both programs begin at 3 p.m.

Kent’s presentation is a fun way for children to familiarize themselves with common Florida birds. Participants may play detective as they read facts about birds and match the correct species. They also will have the opportunity to create their own bird.

Smokey Bear will join the Florida Museum on Aug. 12 for his 65th birthday celebration. The Florida Division of Forestry presentation on fire safety includes information for children and parents about wildfire prevention and outdoor burning guidelines. (more…)

State budget cuts result in early closure of Florida Museum Discovery Room

July 17th, 2008

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — State budget cuts are forcing the Florida Museum of Natural History to close its popular Discovery Room, a hands-on family activity area, Sept. 1.

The Discovery Room is a multi-generational activity space where children and adults can learn about Florida’s natural habitats through games, books and interactive displays. Originally scheduled to remain open through the end of the year, the state reductions prevent the Florida Museum from meeting staff and material requirements for the exhibit.

“The University of Florida mandated a 6 percent cut in the Florida Museum’s overall budget for the 2008-09 year,” said Doug Noble, the museum’s Head of Exhibits and Public Programs. “In addition, the state’s Division of Cultural Affairs reduced the funds available through its Cultural Institutions Program by 63 percent. Combined, these cuts translated into a loss of $236,308 in support for exhibits and public programs and also forced the Florida Museum to eliminate six positions.” (more…)

Fla. Museum reopens popular Discovery Room family activity area today

July 2nd, 2007

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum reopens one of its most popular family activity areas today, a new and expanded Discovery Room. Previously open only during the summer, the Discovery Room will provide ongoing, interactive family activities daily until 4:30 p.m. through December 2008.

Discovery Room visitors may explore a coral reef, create animals from Florida’s diverse ecosystems in self-guided discovery stations, or complete an arts and craft or coloring project. Scheduled programs include story time, puppets and museum exploration with Dr. Discovery.

“The Discovery Room received an outstanding reception last year, and based on the numerous requests of our members and visitors, we’ve decided to offer it through December 2008,” said Florida Museum of Natural History Education Director Jamie Creola. “The expanded schedule will provide opportunities for increased public engagement with Discovery Room resources and allow our education staff to evaluate current, and develop new, programming and exhibits for that space.” (more…)

Indian art exhibit closing to allow for expanded Discovery Room

April 11th, 2007

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History will close its Pearsall Collection of American Indian Art temporary exhibition April 29 to provide additional space for the popular Discovery Room. Previously open only during summer, the improved and expanded Discovery Room will provide ongoing, interactive family activities daily until 4:30 p.m. beginning July 2 through December 2008.

Discovery Room visitors may explore a coral reef, create animals from Florida’s diverse ecosystems in self-guided discovery stations, or complete an arts and craft or coloring project. Scheduled programs include story time, puppets and museum exploration with Dr. Discovery. For more information on the Discovery Room, visit www.flmnh.ufl.edu/education/discovery.htm or call (352) 846-2000, ext. 246. (more…)

Fla. Museum’s free family ‘Discovery Room’ opens June 12

May 15th, 2006

Photo available

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Looking for something the whole family can do this summer? The Florida Museum of Natural History will offer an interactive “Discovery Room” for guests of all ages from June 12- Aug. 13. The room is free and open every day until 4:30 p.m.

Activities include entertaining crafts, including creating creatures from Florida’s diverse ecosystems, hunts for museum treasures and exploration of a coral reef. Guests also may visit during the following scheduled program times for stories, puppets, museum exploration with Dr. Discovery and more!

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