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


9:30 am – 5:00 pm


11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Members' Hours:


8:30 – 9:30 am


10:00 – 11:00 am

Please note: The Academy will be closing at 3:00 pm on 10/24 (final entry at 2:00 pm). We apologize for any inconvenience.

Parking and traffic in Golden Gate Park will be congested the weekend of Oct. 3–5. Save $3 on Academy admission when you take public transportation.


Friends of the Academy

By joining the Friends of the Academy, you have the opportunity to inspire explorers of all ages, get closer to the scientists and their discoveries, and become a leader in a community of lifelong learners. The deeper your engagement, the closer you get – and the bigger your impact.

Why Become a Friend?


Far and Wide

Academy scientists traverse the globe to discover and document life in biodiversity hot spots. The species they discover, the distribution maps they create, and the training they provide to local scientists and educators are instrumental in the race to understand and protect crucial habitats.


Here and Now

Our planet is changing rapidly, and the time to inspire the next generation of scientists and ecological stewards is today. The Academy brings real science into real lives through immersive exhibits and programs, teacher workshops, and personal interactions with live animals and experts. There has never been a better time to get involved.

Become a Friend Renew

Friends of the Academy

Explorers ($1,000+)

All Associates’ benefits, plus:

  • Free admission for two primary cardholders, up to two adult guests per card, and your children or grandchildren (17 years of age and younger) for one year
  • Priority entrance to the museum, rainforest, planetarium and select special exhibits
  • Complimentary admission to NightLife every Thursday evening
  • Four daily admission passes and four Nightlife passes to share
  • Two Friends Behind-the-Scenes tour passes
  • Invitations to year-round special events and receptions exclusive to Friends of the Academy
  • A complimentary glass of champagne when dining at the Moss Room restaurant
  • Complimentary coat check with each visit
  • Dedicated concierge telephone line
  • Recognition in the Academy’s Annual Report
  • Subscription to the monthly Donor e-Newsletter

$870 is tax deductible

Curators ($2,500+)

All Explorers’ benefits, plus:

  • Friends collection tours with our collection manager - offered semi-annually
  • Expedited entry to the Early Explorers Cove (activity area for children 0-5 years and their adult chaperones)
  • Access to the Academy’s exclusive donor lounge
  • Two passes to attend a NightLife VIP tour
  • Two additional daily admission passes to share (6 total)
  • Four 1-hour complimentary parking vouchers for the Music Concourse Parking Facility
  • Invitation to a private reception prior to a lecture

$2,221 is tax deductible

Scientists ($5,000+)

All Curators’ benefits, plus:

  • Invitation to the annual Academy dinner
  • Academy scientist presentation at your school’s career day or science fair
  • A complimentary card for your household caregiver
  • Two additional daily admission passes to share (8 total)
  • Two additional 1-hour complimentary parking vouchers for the Music Concourse Parking Facility (6 hours total)

$4,671 is tax deductible

Become a Friend Renew

Platinum Circle

Donors dining

Starting at the Collectors level, generous donors who make gifts of $10,000 or more play a leadership role for the Academy and enjoy many unique opportunities and privileges as members of our Platinum Circle. If you would like to learn more about how you can have a transformative impact on the future of the Academy, please contact Andi Forker, Associate Director, Leadership Gifts, at (415) 379-5404 or

Collectors ($10,000+)

All Scientists benefits, plus:

  • Two all-day parking passes in the Music Concourse Parking Facility
  • Exclusive access to a dedicated concierge who will plan experiences at the Academy tailored to your interests
  • Invitations to explore Northern California with the Academy on “Local Expeditions” about science and sustainability
  • Invitation to an exclusive dinner with scientists, environmental leaders, and prominent speakers
  • Discounts on renting the Academy for your own private event
  • Priority invitations to Academy Gala events

Value of goods and services: $449

Ecologists ($25,000+)

All Collectors benefits, plus:

  • Two additional all-day parking passes in the Music Concourse Parking Facility
  • A dedicated concierge at the Academy who will work with you to achieve your philanthropic goals
  • Experiences that make the impact of your gift tangible, including customized visits where you can see the students, visitors, and programs that benefit from your generosity
  • Experiences that are tailored to your interests such as behind-the-scenes tours or local nature outings with scientists and educators
  • Assistance in finding hands-on volunteer opportunities for your family at the Academy
  • The opportunity to travel nationally and internationally with Academy scientists and donors to locations of ecological importance
  • The opportunity to have a private luncheon with the Academy’s Executive Director
  • The opportunity to meet with the Chairman of the Board of Trustees to talk about Academy projects and plans that are of interest to you
  • Donation of Academy admission, lecture, and event tickets to two charity auctions of your choice

Value of goods and services: $549

Conservationists ($50,000+)

All Ecologists benefits, plus:

  • A benefits package completely tailored to your interests, including scientific gifts and publications
  • The opportunity to use the Academy’s Board Room, free of charge, for one personal or business event
  • The opportunity for an Academy scientist, educator, or specialist to speak at your private event

Value of goods and services: $699

Environmentalists ($100,000+)

All Conservationists benefits, plus:

  • The opportunity to receive named recognition on an Academy program or exhibition of your choice

Value of goods and services: $699

Friends of the Academy Terms and Conditions

Thank you for your interest in purchasing or renewing an Academy membership. Your generous support of our non-profit organization is genuinely appreciated.

Please select one of the following options:

Become a Friend Renew Give as a Gift


Tel: (415) 379-5405

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2013 Annual Report

Annual report cover

Want to know where the Academy is going—and where we’ve been? Learn how our chief stewards see the future, discover perspectives from members of the Academy’s extended family, meet the partners that make it all possible, and see how we are sustaining the Academy for adventures ahead. At the California Academy of Sciences, 2013 was an exciting year; view our 2013 Annual Report to learn more.

2012 Annual Report

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 Download a join/renew form [44k]
(415) 379-5405

California Academy of Sciences
Golden Gate Park
55 Music Concourse Drive
San Francisco, CA 94118

Friends of the Academy


Friend Testimonials


Lauren Hall

Lauren Hall

Friend of the Academy

“I have always been fascinated by infectious disease: everything from prions and viruses to protozoans and worms. Everyone in my family is mad for science, and we always take friends and family to the Academy when they visit. Whether it's Steinhart Aquarium, a Planetarium show, or a lecture on stem cells, there's something to interest everyone. We support the Academy knowing that our gift supports scientific research, exploration and education”

Become a Friend Renew

Summer Tompkins Walker

Summer Tompkins Walker

Friends Steering Committee member and Friend of the Academy

“At age 11 I had my first BIG encounter with the wildness of the ocean. I was moved deeply by the intensity of its unique ecosystem rich in diversity of sea life and its complex underworld. It left me wanting to make sure that we never let such dynamic ecosystems be put in jeopardy. The diversity and wildness of life is truly captivating to me and I hope to protect as much of what is left for my children and future generations.”

Become a Friend Renew

Laura and Mike Patnode

Laura and Mike Patnode

Friends of the Academy

“The Academy presents long-term value by increasing our investment in science and education and helping form the sort of world we want our children to grow up in. We need to make sure our children have the skills they need to solve problems, and the biggest thing is to educate children about science. We take every opportunity to talk about the Academy with friends and family—I feel good being associated with such a wonderful place and doing my part to promote it.”

Become a Friend Renew

Martha Kropf

Martha Kropf

Former Docent, Honorary Trustee, and Friend of the Academy

“I’m passionate about informal science education, grounded in the research and science of the Academy. Science and engagement—that’s what the Academy is all about.”

Become a Friend Renew

Joann Franklin-Knox

Joann Franklin-Knox

Academy Docent and Ten-Year Member of Friends of the Academy

“What is so worthwhile about the Friends is reaching out to the community and inspiring and informing them of what we are all about. As they begin to understand the remarkable work the Academy is doing, they become supportive as well. It’s an extended community.”

Become a Friend Renew

4-Star Rating from
Charity Navigator


Charity navigator

The Academy is a proud recipient of a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. Click here to review the Academy’s rating.

Donor Bill of Rights


The Academy adheres to the national Donor Bill of Rights, promulgated by the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

 Donor Bill of Rights [33k]