What's on at the California Academy of Sciences
Exhibits, Lectures, Programs and Events
ONGOING through late 2003
Skulls includes almost 1,700 different dead heads -- ranging from monkeys
and giraffes to warthogs and rats to bears and dolphins. Created by Academy
staff, this exhibit is festooned with 860 sea lion heads in a 93-foot-long
undulating display. Skulls will show visitors what the study of human
and animal skulls can reveal about behavior, injury, disease, evolutionary
adaptation, and more. This strange and stunning display will captivate
young and old alike.
Ongoing through 2003
Prepare to look at fish in a whole new light. X-Ray Ichthyology captures
forty-six fish from the Academy's ichthyology collection on X-ray film.
Blown up and backlit, these large-format photographs transform scaly swimmers
ranging from piranhas to guitarfish into eerie, luminescent works of art.
Photo Contest Winners
April 20, 2002 - December 2002
From France to Fresno, children ages 68 have submitted photographs
to the Children's Photography Contest at the Academy. Come see the winning
entries on display in Wild California Hall.
Powers of Ten
June 2002January 2003
Come visit a place where the farthest reaches of the Universe and the
familiar features of your own back yard are just a few steps and a few
zeros apart. Powers of Ten, an exhibit based on the landmark film by Charles
and Ray Eames, will bring this exponential journey through time and space
to the Academy.
Using a series of photographs, Powers of Ten explores 44 powers of ten,
beginning with 1026 meters (the size of the known Universe) and ending
at 10-18 meters (the size of the smallest known subatomic particles).
At each station, videos and objects from the Academy's vast research collections
allow visitors to investigate scientific discoveries relating to different
powers of ten. For instance, at the 1025 station, visitors can touch a
4 billion year old meteorite. This artifact and others like it are sure
to inspire a sense of wonder in visitors of all sizes.
Nature Discovery - ongoing
Each year the California Academy of Sciences offers children, families
and adults more than 200 field trips, workshops and classes focusing on
science and the natural world. Explore tide pools in Marin, discover birds
in Golden Gate Park or learn how to draw and paint animals in Steinhart
Children's Story Time - ongoing
Story Time takes place in the Skulls exhibit at the California Academy
of Sciences each Saturday at 10:30 am. Children from ages 3 to 7 are welcome.
The first Wednesday of every month is free, all year long! The museum
stays open until 8:45 pm on Free Wednesdays - at 5 pm step into Morrison
Planetarium for a free half-hour concert.
Wednesday July 3, 10 am - 8:45 pm
California Academy of Sciences
Come watch live sharks, alligators, penguins, hundreds of fish and a living
coral reef at the Steinhart Aquarium. The Steinhart houses over 600 varieties
of aquatic life in 165 individual tanks. Open ocean fish swim around you
in the 100,000-gallon fish roundabout (feedings take place at 1:30 pm
daily). Penguin feedings take place at
11:30 am and 4 pm each day.
California Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park
Open 365 days of the year
The Bone Head Ball
Rock, rattle and roll at Academy's eleventh annual summer gala, on Saturday,
July 13, 8:30 pm to 12:30 am. Enjoy cocktails and hors d'oeuvres by McCall
Associates, dancing, and music, in the theme of the Academy's blockbuster
exhibition, Skulls. Co-chairs of this event, which supports Academy research
and education, are Peter and Dodie Sutro Crawford and Ken and Akiko Freeman.
Tickets are $100 for members and $125 for non-members.
Dracula Ants and a Map to Save Madagascar
Dr. Brian Fisher, assistant curator of entomology
Over the last 18 months, Dr. Fisher has visited 35 sites across Madagascar
in an effort to map insect biodiversity in one of the most threatened
habitats in the world. In addition to describing results from his recent
field efforts, including the discovery of the Dracula ants, he describes
why mapping biodiversity is vital for effective conservation practices
on the island.
Wednesday, July 10, 2 & 7:30 pm,
Free to members/$8 non-members.
-Kids: Things to Do-
Take a crash course on recognizing animals by their skulls alone. Learn
some quick tips to make identification easier among skulls of different
vertebrates, and discover important details used by experts to compare
species. We'll look at human, hyena, turtle and rodent skulls among others.
Tuesdays in July, 11:30 am and 1:30 pm
Marine Mammal Skulls
Join the Academy's Dr. Alejandro Acevedo-Guitierrez on a fun, family mini-lecture
series aimed to explain different aspects of the anatomy and function
of marine mammal skulls.
Wednesdays, July 3 & 17, 11:30 am and 1:30 pm
Join Academy naturalist Juan-Carlos Solis and examine mammal, bird, reptile
and fish skulls. Look for clues that may reveal what the skull owner ate
and how it lived. Explore various skull specimens and see samples of the
food they may have eaten when they were alive. Wednesday, July 3, 11:30
am and 1:30 pm
Explore some of the beliefs and practices associated with skulls around
the world. Examine myths, medical treatments and scientific discoveries
throughout history and in modern times. Topics include head-shrinking
in the Shuar sub-tribe of Jivaro Indians, Aztec skull burials and a historic
review of helmets.
Thursdays in July, 11:30 am and 1:30 pm
How Do They Do That?
Uncover the connection between skulls and skill in the animal world, as
we explain animal senses by looking at the skull that make them possible.
How do animals locate prey without seeing it or hearing it? Or swallow
prey bigger than their heads?
Saturday, July 6, 11:30 am and 1:30 pm
Marin Headlands Experience for Little Ones
Bring your little ones to experience the wonders of the Marin Headlands.
This remarkable natural area, just north of the Golden Gate Bridge, offers
rolling hills, sweeping ocean views, and a variety of birds, mammals,
insects, and coastal plants. For families with children ages 3 to 5. Instructed
by Ginger Parish.
Family Field Trip Sunday, July 7, 9:30 amnoon
$20 adults/$15 children, members & $25 adults/$20 children, non-members
Owl Pellet Forensics
Look for skulls in owl pellets and find out who is on the menu for these
supreme night hunters. We'll provide owl pellets, dissecting tools, and
skull identification guides.
Wednesday, July 10, 12:30 pm
Make a Skull
Make simple machine skull models complete with false teeth and hinged
jaws, and study how function dictates form in this orthodontic adventure.
Using balsa wood/scrap wood, hinges, and false teeth, students will create
their own set of jaws and dentition. We'll also have an observation station
with different skulls on hand for you to handle and examine.
Saturdays, July 13 & 20 and Sundays, July 7 & 14, 11:30 am and
Mysterious Victims of Flying Predators
Examine the hunting techniques of hawks, eagles and other flying predators,
then reconstruct the scene of the crime and identify the skulls of their
prey. Owl pellets will be provided for close examination.
Sundays, July 21 & 28, 11:30 am and 1:30 pm
Summer camp isn't just for little kids. At the Academy's overnight camps,
older kids and teens learn and practice outdoor skills, field-biology
techniques, and team-building activities all while studying California's
diverse ecosystems. Twelve to 14-year-olds explore the beautiful, rugged
Sonoma County coastline in "Marine Adventurers" (orientation
August 5; trip August 69). High mountain meadows, sparkling alpine
lakes, and pine-forested slopes await intrepid 13 to 16 year-olds in
"Mountain Ecology Adventurers" (orientation July 9; trip August
1923). For day camp, join "Golden Gate Park Explorers,"
one week sessions MondayFriday, 9 am4 pm.
Folk Songs of the Balkans
The Dalmacijo Singers bring us a program of traditional songs from Bosnia
and Croatia. The singers perform to the accompaniment of live music by
Novi Stari Tamburas.
Saturday, July 6, 1 pm
The Venezuelan Cuatro
The national instrument of Venezuela, the four-stringed cuatro, was inspired
by the Spanish guitar and derives its name from the number of its strings.
Roy Jelinek began playing the cuatro at a young age, eventually developing
a unique "singing" style for this instrument.
Saturday, July 20, 1 pm
Tommy Meisel and his Blues Band offer a toe-tapping, jump-up-and-dance
concert of lively blues music in the Chicago style. The band features
Tommy on the harmonica amplified in a style popularized by the great harmonica
player Little Walter, with the harp held against the microphone in the
musician's cupped hands.
Saturday, July 27, 1 pm
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