Celebrate the winter holidays with a scientific twist from November 26, 2014 – January 4, 2015
SAN FRANCISCO (October 8, 2014) – Starting November 26, visitors to the California Academy of Sciences can revel in the wonder of ‘Tis the Season for Science, the museum’s annual holiday exhibit that showcases the science behind the holiday season. The Academy’s Piazza will transform as interactive displays encourage visitors to peer through “the eyes of a reindeer” to see how these intrepid animals use UV vision to find food underneath a blanket of snow, learn how and why a reindeer’s mighty antlers are among the fastest growing in the animal kingdom, and discover why these hardy animals depend on a diet of moss and lichen to provide nutritional fuel during grueling winter months. Plus, visitors can meet a pair of live reindeer, experience indoor snow flurries, step inside a giant “Snowman Theater,” and much more. A suite of holiday-themed programs, including quiz shows and live music performances, will get visitors up and moving as they learn about the fascinating science behind these “Nomads of the North.”
In and around the Academy’s central Piazza, visitors will find a wintry wonderland, complete with:
- Indoor snow flurries twice an hour
- A “Snowman Theater”—an immersive digital dome shaped like a giant snowman, which will play a child-friendly show on the science of reindeer, titled Roaming with Reindeer
- Interactive displays that highlight the amazing adaptations of reindeer and invite visitors to see an animation of antler growth, feel how reindeer fur insulates against cold, spin zoetropes illustrating reindeer in motion, experience a simulation of reindeer vision, and trace a reindeer migration route
- A stage for special programs including holiday-themed quiz shows and live music performances
- A pair of live reindeer, Yukon and Willow, who will take up residence in the museum’s East Garden for the duration of the exhibit
See below for a schedule of daily and special programs at the Academy during ‘Tis the Season for Science.
Penguin 101: Dance, Waddle, And Wonder
Daily at 11 am, Piazza
Find out why African penguins are perfectly suited for their rocky ocean homes, from their tuxedo-like feathers to their super swimming skills. Waddle over and show us your best penguin bray! This interactive program is recommended for children 10 and under. Free with Academy admission. California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. (415) 379‑8000. www.calacademy.org.
Daily at 12 pm, East Garden
Sidle up to our special live visitors, and discover how reindeer travel up to 3,000 miles per year in the wild thanks to some unique adaptations. Trace their epic journey through forests and tundra to find out how these "Nomads of the North" impact their far-flung habitat. Free with Academy admission. California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. (415) 379‑8000. www.calacademy.org.
Winter Trivia Quest
Daily at 1 pm, Piazza
Team up and explore the survival strategies of animals large and small with this friendly game show-style trivia contest. Work together with the help of a presenter to learn how animals like gray whales and monarch butterflies travel—and survive—during the long, cold winter season. Free with Academy admission. California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. (415) 379‑8000. www.calacademy.org.
Festive Holiday Performances At The Academy
Performances at 12 pm and 2 pm on November 28-30, December 7, December 20-January 4
Live on the Academy’s Piazza stage, enjoy festive performances by musicians, cultural groups, and more on select dates this holiday season. Free with Academy admission. California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. (415) 379-8000. www.calacademy.org.
'Tis the Season for Science
November 26, 2014 - January 4, 2015
Celebrate the festive, winter season with a scientific twist at the California Academy of Sciences’ annual holiday exhibit. From fast-growing antlers to dynamic diets and amazing migrations, discover how reindeer adaptations allow these hardy animals to thrive in demanding Arctic environments. Live reindeer, indoor snow flurries, the Snowman Theater, merry programs and performances, and more will return to delight visitors of all ages. California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. (415) 379-8000. www.calacademy.org.
The California Academy of Sciences is home to an aquarium, planetarium, natural history museum, and research and education programs, which engage people of all ages and backgrounds on two of the most important topics of our time: life and its sustainability. Admission to the Academy is: $34.95 for adults; $29.95 for youth ages 12 to 17, Seniors ages 65+, and students with valid ID; $24.95 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 pm Monday - Saturday, and 11 am - 5 pm on Sunday. During peak periods, including some holiday weekends, extended hours may apply. Visit www.calacademy.org or call (415) 379-8000 for more.