55 Music Concourse Dr.
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco CA
94118
415.379.8000
Regular Hours:

Daily

9:30 am – 5:00 pm

Sunday

11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Members' Hours:

Tuesday

8:30 – 9:30 am

Sunday

10:00 – 11:00 am
Closures
Notices

The Academy will be closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

There are no notifications at this time.

 

NightLife at the Academy

Every Thursday night a new adventure unfolds.  Set out with friends on a journey to the stars and to the depths of the sea with a cocktail in your hand and wonder in your eyes— only at NightLife at the California Academy of Sciences.  21+, ID required for entry. 6-10 pm (Exhibit times vary)

Gallery Crawl NightLife

Gallery Crawl NightLife

Music by Slayers Club
21+ event, 6:00-10:00 pm

Back by popular demand—an inspiring night of art and science!

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Pop-Up Art Gallery in African Hall (Level 1)
6:00-10:00 pm, Explore art selections from the following curators:

Pop-Up Art Gallery & Live Art-Making in the East Pavilion
(Level 1)

6:00-10:00 pm, Explore art selections from the following curators:

  • Spoke Art—An art space specializing in new contemporary painting, sculpture, and illustration located in Lower Nob Hill. Featuring works by Scott Scheidly.
  • Warholian–An arts documagazine from photojournalist Michael Cuffe. Featuring works by Steve Javiel. 
  • ArtSpan—A locally-based organization with a mission of connecting the public to art through community outreach. Featuring live art-making with SF Open Studios Artists including Cindy Shih, Joshua Coffy, Malik Seneferu, Leah Tumerman, and Alexandra Blum.

Music & Projections in the Coral Reef
(Lower Level / Aquarium)

6:00-10:00 PM, Music from Slayers Club DJ collective including Bdot (Resonate), Joe Mousepad (Slayers Club/Resonate), Manitous & Swoonz (Slayers Club), and OG:KRUSH. Visual projections from All of it Now. 

Academy Illustrators & Live Painting by the Project Lab (Level 1)
6:30-9:00 PM, Academy scientific illustrators will show you how their scientific drawings are used to document specimens from our collection—you never know just what they’ll doodle!

6:00-10:00 pm, Live painting from Gauntlet Gallery—Located in the Tenderloin district of SF, Gauntlet Gallery is committed to creating an approachable and engaging platform for emerging and established artists.

Slayers Club DJ Collective in the Piazza (Level 1)
6:00-10:00 pm, Groove to the bass-heavy sounds of the Slayers Club DJ collective including Eitch , Pegasister (Tricycle Records), Freddie Future (Slayers Club),and Matt Haze (Slayers Club)

Skulls Exhibit in the Forum (Level 2)
6:00-9:30 pm, Want to get your creative juices flowing? Show off your drawing skills at a sketching station upstairs in our new Skulls exhibit. Plus, walk along a wallscape of sea lion skulls, watch a live colony of dermestid beetles demonstrate their "bone cleaning" skills, and learn how scientists use the Academy's vast collection of skulls to uncover clues about life on Earth. 

21+ Event, ID required for entry.

Note: The 4-story Rainforest exhibit closes at 7:45pm and planetarium passes are distributed to visitors on a first-come first-served basis. Special programs and lectures may have limited seating and admission will also be made available to visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.

Buy Tickets

RSVP on Facebook

 

 
Dark Universe Planetarium presentation

Planetarium

Enjoy the following planetarium shows this week at NightLife:

6:30 pm
Universe Update
Take a tour of the Universe with a sprinkling of the hottest news stories from astronomy and the space sciences!  Ryan Wyatt, Director of the Morrison Planetarium, pilots you through the stars and beyond the galaxies, explaining the latest space headlines in easily-digestible terms, and returns you safely to Earth in less than an hour.

7:30 & 8:30 pm
Dark Universe

Explore two of today’s greatest cosmic mysteries—dark matter and dark energy—in a vast, data-fueled starscape of beauty and wonder. Hurtle through deep space and be there for the birth of our own galaxy while exploring never-before-seen visualizations of the invisible matter and forces at work in our Universe.

Note: Passes to planetarium shows are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Future of Transportation NightLife

Future of Transportation NightLife

Music by Miles the DJ
21+ event, 6:00-10:00 pm

How will we get where we’re going in the future? This week, NightLife explores the slick and efficient ways that transportation is rapidly evolving with some of the hottest names on the road.

In the East Garden, check out the Model S by Tesla Motors in all its zero-emissions glory and get an exclusive look at what’s underneath the hood of this eco-friendly engineering masterpiece with rolling chassis on display. 

Prefer to sit back and let someone else do all the work? Take in the Google Self-Driving Car Lexus prototype plus, check out the 100% electric Renault Twizy

If you’re partial to two-wheeled transportation, prepare to behold the Mission R and limited edition Mission RS from Mission Motorcycles.

Hear a talk from Ben Davis, founder of Illuminate the Arts, on Lightrail, an innovative plan to reimagine mass transit through above and below-ground light engineering. 

Plus, check out the Porteur by Faraday Bicycles, the latest innovation in electric bicycling with a charming 1950’s aesthetic.

The New Wheel, a locally based bike shop specializing in highly efficient electric bicycles, will be on hand to show off the same innovative designs that have turned their Bernal Heights storefront into a mecca for bike-tech nerds.

Love to shred but lack the balance? Check out Onewheel, the world’s first self-balancing, electric skateboard.

Hear how SPUR is turning big ideas into real-world changes to the role that public transportation plays in SF’s urban landscape.

Go green on your next road trip with Charge Across Town, an educational organization helping to move people from fossil fuel vehicles to cleaner, greener modes of personal transportation through electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles.

In the planetarium, fasten your seatbelt for a special presentation on the future of space travel and learn how scientists and engineers are working to build roads to the final frontier. Off we go! 

21+ Event, ID required for entry.

Note: The 4-story Rainforest exhibit closes at 7:45pm and planetarium passes are distributed to visitors on a first-come first-served basis. Special programs and lectures may have limited seating and admission will also be made available to visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.

Buy Tickets

RSVP on Facebook

 

 
Dark Universe Planetarium presentation

Planetarium

Enjoy the following planetarium shows this week at NightLife:

6:30 pm
Future of Space Transportation
How did we land on the moon?  What is the best way to get humans to Mars?  When will Uber and Lyft be offering rides to the International Space Station?  Join planetarium presenters Aaron White and Daniel Brady as they discuss the past, present, and future of space transportation.

7:30 & 8:30 pm
Dark Universe

Explore two of today’s greatest cosmic mysteries—dark matter and dark energy—in a vast, data-fueled starscape of beauty and wonder. Hurtle through deep space and be there for the birth of our own galaxy while exploring never-before-seen visualizations of the invisible matter and forces at work in our Universe.

Note: Passes to planetarium shows are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.

NightLifeLIVE

NightLife LIVE 2014

A monthly outdoor series that pairs emerging music and innovative visual arts with cutting-edge science

This summer, NightLife is going LIVE! On one special Thursday each month, beginning May 8th through October 16th, experience rotating art installations and outdoor performances in the East Garden by bands like Rogue Wave, Small Black, Dam-Funk, Beacon, and more.

Building off the success of our weekly Thursday night events, NightLife LIVE enlists the expertise of buzzworthy local tastemakers to pair emerging bands and musicians with cutting-edge visual artists in an innovative intersection of science, music, and art. 

How is NightLife LIVE different from other weekly NightLife events? In addition to our weekly themed NightLife events, NightLife LIVE will highlight outdoor music performances and rotating art installations in the East Garden one Thursday a month, for six months.

We’re excited to launch this monthly NightLife LIVE series while continuing to offer Bay Area culture lovers the same dose of music, creatures, and cocktails they’ve come to know and love every Thursday night.

Check out the official NightLife LIVE playlist to preview upcoming series performers!  

For adults 21+. Tickets $12 / $10 for Academy members.

Buy Tickets

 

 
NightLife LIVE crowd

 

The NightLife LIVE Lineup

Here's what's coming up in the next six months, with LIVE outdoor performances and art installations in the East Garden. Stay tuned for updates!

May 8th
Live sets by Dam-Funk and Myron & E
DJ set by Grown Kids Radio
Presented by Noise Pop
Artist exhibit debut by Boback Emad

June 12th
Live sets by Small Black and Beacon
DJ set by Heathered Pearls
Presented by ISO50
Artist exhibit by Azael Ferrer

July 10th
Live sets by Rogue Wave and Kacey Johansing
Presented by Soundwave
Artist exhibit by Gabriel Fontanillo and Leyre Montes

August 7th
Live sets by Typhoon & Yesway
Presented by Outside Lands

Artist exhibit by Ardent Heavy Industries

September 11th
Live sets by Kelley Stoltz and Mystic Braves
Presented by (((folkYEAH!)))

Artist exhibit by Karen Cusolito

October 16th
Live set by BADBADNOTGOOD and Saint Pepsi
Presented by Treasure Island Music Festival

Artist exhibit by Make Big Art

For adults 21+. Tickets $12 / $10 for Academy members. 

Buy Tickets

 

VIP tour on Living Roof, gem and mineral collection, students and reasearchers in the lab

Food

A variety of food options are available each week at NightLife from 6-9:30pm.

Academy Cafe, Level 1 (across from Rainforest)
Sit and enjoy bites and drinks crafted by San Francisco’s renowned chef Charles Phan. Special guest DJs rotating weekly.

Academy Cafe Food Cart, Lobby
Grab small bites on the go.

The Moss Room, Lower Level (enter at Academy Cafe)
Sit and enjoy an artisan cocktail or variety of local beers and wines with bites from the cafe.
For large groups, please dial:
415.876.6121

 
Earthquake exhibit, baby ostrich

Drink

"Gallery Crawl NightLife" Cocktail Tour

Each week, enjoy a different fresh seasonal "Craft on Draft" cocktail at each bar area. Please note: All bars accept cash and credit cards.

Check out this week's cocktail tour menu designed by our resident mixologist Shane McKnight!

Piazza Bar

Neo-Impressionist Mule
Absolut Vodka, Mixi’s “LIVE” handcrafted ginger beer, saffron bitters & fresh lime

Planetarium Bar

Root Beer Sazerac
J.P. Wiser's Spiced Vanilla Rye Whiskey, Clandestine Absinthe, Mixi's House-made Root Beer Bitters & shaved lemon peel

Swamp Bar
Pop-Up Peach Tea
Ole’ Smoky Peach Moonshine, Ole’ Smoky White Lightnin’, Darjeeling Sun Tea, lemon juice, local honey, sliced peaches & fresh mint

NightLife Craft Brew Specials
Pacific Brew Lab Imperial Ipa
Pacific Brew Lab Hibiscus Saisson
*Available at Swamp bar only

Aquarium Bar

Brazilian Wild Flower
Ypico Cachaca, Bols Elderflower, white peach, lime juice, organic cane juice & fresh sage

3rd Floor / Living Roof Bar

Still Life Gin & Tonic
Damrak Gin with Mixi's Handcrafted Basil & Grapefruit Tonic finished with fresh basil

Earthquake Bar
Painter's Pisco Punch
Kappa Pisco, Benedictine, pineapple, coconut water, kaffir lime cordial & house-made bitters
 

VIP tour on Living Roof, gem and mineral collection, students and reasearchers in the lab

NightLife VIP Tour

Want an entirely different NightLife experience? Join us on our NightLife VIP Tour.

Tickets include:

  • Admission to NightLife with express entry
  • One-hour behind-the-scenes tour with a private viewing of the Academy's renowned gem and mineral collection
  • Open bar in a reserved cocktail area prior to the tour
  • Meet and greet with Academy researchers in the project lab
  • VIP access to the Rainforest, and a reserved pass for the 8:30 Planetarium show

$59/person – limited tickets available each week

6pm - 8pm (event ends at 10 pm)

For tickets and details, please click here.

 
NightLife visitors enjoying cocktails, bar, NightLife Private Lounge

NightLife Private Lounge

Looking for a great space to celebrate landing that big account, throw a birthday party, or just gather with all your old friends, all while enjoying San Francisco’s most exciting Thursday night event?  Rent out the NightLife Private Lounge. You’ll get early access to a premium private room with catering and bar service and access to our Thursday NightLife event.

For more booking information contact David Nemoyten at (415) 379-5499 or dnemoyten@calacademy.org.

 
Morrison Planetarium earthquake visualization

NightLife Group Bookings

Click here to buy NightLife tickets for a group of 10 or more people.


Connect with NightLife

   

#CASNightLife

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Next NightLife Event

   

8/21/2014 - "Gallery Crawl NightLife"

Buy Tickets

 

RSVP on Facebook

Upcoming Events

   

8/28/14 - "Future of Transportation NightLife"

Summer 2014 - "NightLife LIVE"

Maps & Directions

   

Map

Click here for information about how to get to the Academy plus parking and safety tips.

NightLife Sponsorship

   

Thank you for your interest in sponsoring NightLife. For inquiries, please contact:

sponsorship@calacademy.org

NightLife Inquiries

   

If you’re interested in performing or presenting at Nightlife, please contact nbooking@calacademy.org.

Please direct general questions or feedback to nightlife@calacademy.org.

What our Visitors Say

   

Nightlife has always been a very entertaining and new experience everytime I have been. Whether from the crazy Dinosaur Burlesque show to seeing Fitz & The Tantrums at the Nightlife Gala I never know.

- Zanni D.

The exhibits are beautifully maintained. Our NightLife visit included a back-of-the-scenes tour. Staff is very knowledgeable and friendly.

- Nina S.

NightLife is great! Fun and informational events, delicious drinks, good music and great company has been my experience thus far.

- Michael A.

At NightLife, I get a kick out of seeing adults experiment with the exhibits. I've been many times and still have not seen everything. Planetarium is up next!

- Michael A.

The Academy is one of those places that gives you both an educational and entertaining experience and the NightLife is such a fun event!

- Barbara C.

I love NightLife at the California Academy of Sciences because no matter how many times I go, I always find something new to learn.

- Gaby B.

Visited on a Thursday night and did the VIP package. Nice to have a private group tour with a separate area for food and beverage and express entrance to the Planetarium.

- Bill K.

NightLife really is the coolest place in town on Thursdays. Great place to take first dates, groups of friends and out-of-towners.

- Kelly B.

The crowd is happy, fun, no-drama type people. You get good food, good drinks, and great DJ's. If you want to go out and have real fun, this is the place to do it.

- Tracey M.

NightLife is the best thnig going on in the city. You have interesting and unique experiences with every visit.

- Tracey M.