Press Release

Stephanie Stone (415) 379-5121
Helen Taylor (415) 379-5128


SAN FRANCISCO (March 14, 2011) – The California Academy of Sciences is committed to exploring, explaining and protecting the natural world throughout the year, but on Earth Day, that spotlight on our planet’s health intensifies. From Thursday, April 21 - Saturday, April 23, the Academy will host a series of special programs which highlight our planet’s incredible biodiversity and fragility, sponsored by Pacific Gas & Electric Company.
Thursday, April 21 from 6-10 pm
Earth Day NightLife – ages 21+

The Academy’s Earth Day festivities begin at NightLife, with the opening of artist Michael Bartalos’ installation Handle with Care, and a presentation and book signing with photographer Sharon Beals, whose photographs of the Academy’s nest and egg collection are featured in a new book, and as part of the Academy’s new Spring to Life exhibit. Bartalos will do a Q&A about the artwork, the product of a month-long project in the Academy’s Piazza inspired by the role recycling plays in protecting forested ecosystems. The night also features showings of Fragile Planet in the planetarium, and music by Outersect. In honor of Earth Day, those arriving by foot, bike, or public transit will receive $2 off NightLife admission and skip the hassle of parking. NightLife is a weekly event for adults, during which guests can dance to some of San Francisco's most popular DJs, and enjoy food, cocktails and conversation while exploring the Academy’s world-class exhibits. Admission is $12 per person. Buy tickets at
Friday, April 22 – Saturday, April 23
Earth Day Celebration – all ages

Visitor programs, activities, and entertainment will highlight sustainability and conservation. As always, visitors who take public transportation to the Academy can receive $3 off. Activities included with general admission; check for detailed schedule.

  • Q&A with artist Michael Bartalos: Gain insights into Bartalos’ artistic process and the sustainable inspiration behind Handle with Care
  • Family Nature Crafts Station: Stop by this self-service craft station to make a project inspired by Michael Bartalos’ artwork, and add your wish for planet Earth
  • Google Earth Explorations: See how scientists, researchers, and everyday people use this innovative software to better understand and conserve our planet
  • Climate Science & Solutions: Learn about the science behind climate change through this high-energy, accessible presentation by the Alliance for Climate Education
  • See Your Power: See exactly how much gas and electricity you’re using – and when you’re using it. PG&E’s SmartMeter™ See Your Power tour will help you understand where your energy is going & how to make changes to save the planet – and save money
  • Fragile Planet shows in the planetarium
  • Stalk Bicycles: Check out how a local company makes eco-friendly custom bike frames from bamboo and recyclable materials
  • Save the Frogs! Learn what we can do to help fragile and threatened frog species and the ecosystems they rely on
  • Explore the Living Roof with Naturalists: Discover what birds and insects visit the Academy’s 2.5-acre living roof
  • California Spotlight: Dive into native flora and fauna, in honor of Native Plant Week
  • Earth Day Storytime at the Early Explorers Cove
  • Spring to Life continues through May 1, featuring chirping chicks and Egg Alley, an immersive display of stunning eggs & nests from the Academy’s research collections

Saturdays, April 23 and April 30
Conservation Photography Workshop

In honor of Earth Day, the Academy is launching a brand new Conservation Photography Workshop. The hands-on two-day workshop introduces participants to the methodology and techniques of conservation photography on day one, among the Academy's live animals. One week later, the group will put its skills into practice on an all-day excursion to some of the most dramatic protected spaces in Point Reyes National Seashore. Open to ages 18+, registration is $189 for adults ($159 for members), including instruction, Academy admission on day one, and roundtrip transportation & lunch on day two. Learn more at
About Artist Michael Bartalos
San Francisco-based artist Michael Bartalos draws on science, geography, history and language to produce limited print editions, artist’s books, sculptural assemblages, and graphic arts in the U.S., Europe and Japan. He has designed Swatch watches, U.S. postage stamps, and merchandise and display graphics for the California Academy of Sciences. Bartalos is the Academy’s first Affiliated Artist. Concurrent to Handle With Care, he is at work on the “Long View Project” facilitated by an Antarctic Artists and Writers Program grant from the National Science Foundation.
Corporate Support
Pacific Gas and Electric Company is the lead sustainability sponsor of the California Academy of Sciences, sponsoring the exhibit Altered State: Climate Change in California and serving as a founding partner for the exhibit Science in Action.
About the California Academy of Sciences
The California Academy of Sciences is home to Steinhart Aquarium, Morrison Planetarium, Kimball Natural History Museum, and world-class research and education programs—all under one living roof. Admission to the Academy is: $29.95 for adults; $24.95 for youth ages 12 to 17, Seniors ages 65+ and students with valid ID; $19.95 for children ages 4 to 11; and free for children ages 3 and younger. Admission fees include all exhibits and shows. Hours are 9:30 am - 5:00 pm Monday-Saturday, and 11:00 am - 5:00 pm on Sunday. The Academy is closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas. During peak periods, including some holiday weekends, an admission surcharge and extended hours may apply. Visit or call (415) 379-8000 for more information.