All-Star Week - December 27-30

All-Star Week

Spend your winter break with us! Warm up in Butterflies!, spend some time with our live animals, and indulge in the sumptuous world of Chocolate: The Exhibition. Celebrate what makes the Academy great with exciting new stage shows, fascinating fossils, hands-on science, and special specimens from our collections.

Don’t Miss!
Special Exhibits Gallery
Chocolate: The Exhibition
Open all day

Indulge yourself in the sumptuous world of chocolate! Presented in Spanish and English, Chocolate: The Exhibition traces the intriguing story of this “food of the gods” from its origin as a unique rain forest tree to the sensuous sweet millions of people crave today. Explore chocolate’s impact on tropical ecosystems, human cultures, and the global economy through a range of fun, hands-on activities for all ages. Stand under a life-size cacao tree, touch pods and seeds, and more.

Chocolate and its national tour were developed by The Field Museum, Chicago. This project was supported, in part, by the National Science Foundation. $5 nonmembers, $3 Individual and Family members, free for Family Plus members and above. Not a member? Join at the admissions desk today and deduct today’s admission from the cost of your membership.

Ground Level in the Commons
Noon–2 p.m.

Hot Chocolate Bar presented by 12th Street Catering Warm up with the ultimate hot chocolate beverage. Try something new with our Mexican hot chocolate or our soy and agave hot cocoa. From mini marshmallows to fresh whipped cream, the toppings are sure to please! $6.95

December 27: Dino Day

Come face-to-face with fossils, meet living relatives of these ancient beasts, and explore the world of the dinosaurs all day at the Academy. Dinosaur Day is part of All-Star Days.

First Level
Auditorium
Dinosaur Detectives
11 a.m.

Do you know what makes a dinosaur a dinosaur? Can you tell a fossil from a fake? Put your skills to the test during this interactive stage show and meet a live animal that has some things in common with the extinct stars of the show.

Field Tested
1 p.m.

Get set for an adventure as you help prepare would-be scientists from the audience for an expedition in this interactive stage show. What do Academy scientists need when they go into the field for their research? The answers might surprise you!

Academy Animal Ambassadors
3 p.m.

Meet some of the live animals that call the Academy home during this live animal show. Discover their stories and learn what you can do to help their wild cousins.

Dinosaur Hall
Closer Look: Fossils

Think you can tell a fossil from a rock? Can you figure out what happened to an animal that lived millions of years ago? Try your hand at some serious science at our brand new discovery cart.

North American Hall
Fossil Forensics

Touch real fossils and use your dinosaur detective skills to solve prehistoric puzzles.

Second Level
Panda Lobby
Chocolate 101

Think you know chocolate? Use your senses to get an even deeper (and delicious) understanding of everyone’s favorite dessert. Test your nose with sweet smell jars and take a look at chocolate cake under a microscope. Examine a real cacao pod and identify the ingredients of popular desserts.

Third Level
Bird Classroom
Dinosaur Crafts

Make and take a prehistoric project and learn even more about everyone’s favorite dinosaur, T. rex!

Outside In
Story Time
2 p.m.

Visit Outside In for an interactive dinosaur tale featuring a live animal.

December 28: Live Animal Day

See firsthand how we take care of our live animals, and learn from the stars of our dioramas all day at the Academy. Animal Day is part of All-Star Days.

Throughout the Museum

Keep your eyes open for live animal encounters as animals (with their handlers) wander the halls.

First Level
Auditorium
Academy Animal Ambassadors
11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Meet some of the live animals that call the Academy home during this live animal show. Discover their stories and learn what you can do to help their wild cousins.

Creepy Crawlies
1 p.m.

See the spineless wonders of our live invertebrate collection live, large, and onstage!

Dinosaur Hall
Small Wonders

Get up close and personal with some of the smaller critters in our live animal collection and a diverse display of skulls, feathers, and furs. Use technology to see them like you’ve never seen them before.

North American Hall
Diorama Diversions

The animals in our dioramas may be a little less lively than our beloved live critters, but they still have a lot to teach us. Touch real furs and see the striking skulls of the animals of North America.

Second Level
Panda Lobby
Chocolate 101

Think you know chocolate? Use your senses to get an even deeper (and delicious) understanding of everyone’s favorite dessert. Test your nose with sweet smell jars and take a look at chocolate cake under a microscope. Examine a real cacao pod and identify the ingredients of popular desserts.

African Hall
Critter Capers

Stop by to see one of our live animals enjoying time in an exercise pen and get your critter questions answered. (noon, 2, and 4 p.m.)

Third Level
Bird Classroom
Animal Crafts

Explore your wild side and make an animal mask to take home. Plus, learn more about how an animal’s looks helps it to survive.

Outside In
Story Time
2 p.m.

Visit Outside In for an interactive animal tale featuring a live animal.

December 29: Bird and Bug Day

What has feathers and six legs? The Academy’s Bird and Bug Day! Learn more about our feather friends and creepy crawlies all day. Bird and Bug Day is part of All-Star Days.

Throughout the Museum

Keep your eyes open for live animal encounters as animals (with their handlers) wander the halls.

First Level
Auditorium
Creepy Crawlies
11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

See the spineless wonders of our live invertebrate collection live, large, and on stage!

On the Wing
1 p.m.

Meet the Academy’s feathered residents during this live animal show.

Dinosaur Hall
Fabulous Feathers

Feathers are more than just pretty bird clothing. See feathers in a whole new way as you investigate different types of feathers under a microscope.

North American Hall
Bird Beaks and Bug Bodies

Explore bird beak basics and peck, scoop, and pry your way through a birdy buffet. Enroll in Arthropods 101 and learn what makes a bug a bug.

Second Level
Panda Lobby
Chocolate 101

Think you know chocolate? Use your senses to get an even deeper (and delicious) understanding of everyone’s favorite dessert. Test your nose with sweet smell jars and take a look at chocolate cake under a microscope. Examine a real cacao pod and identify the ingredients of popular desserts.

African Hall
Investigating Invertebrates

Spend some time with the spineless stars of our live invertebrate collection. You might meet an insect, arachnid, or snail!

Third Level
Bird Classroom
Birds and Bugs Craft

Make a bug-inspired work of art or a feathered masterpiece to take home.

Outside In Story Time
2 p.m.

Visit Outside In for an interactive animal tale featuring a live animal.

December 30: Weird-Thing-in-a-Jar Day

Science is surprising, inspiring, and weird! Come see the weirder specimens in our collections all day at the Academy. Weird-Thing-in-a-Jar Day is part of All-Star Days.

First Level
Auditorium
Weird and Wonderful
11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

They might not be jarred, but the live animals of the Academy are plenty weird! Meet the live animals of the Academy during this live animal show.

Field Tested
1 p.m.

Get set for an adventure as you help prepare would-be scientists from the audience for an expedition in this interactive stage show. What do Academy scientists need when they go into the field for their research? The answers might surprise you!

Dinosaur Hall
Closer Look: Preserving Specimens

How do scientists across the Academy preserve specimens for research? Come find out about the amazing techniques.

North American Hall
Cool Collections

Peer into jars from the Academy’s collections for some weird and wonderful surprises.

Second Level
Panda Lobby
Chocolate 101

Think you know chocolate? Use your senses to get an even deeper (and delicious) understanding of everyone’s favorite dessert. Test your nose with sweet smell jars and take a look at chocolate cake under a microscope. Examine a real cacao pod and identify the ingredients of popular desserts.

African Hall
(More) Cool Collections

More weird-things-in-jars to inspire your scientific investigations!

Third Level
Crazy Crafts

Think you know weird? Create a creature of bizarre adaptations.

Outside In
Story Time
2 p.m.

Visit Outside In for an interactive tale featuring a live animal.

Plan your visit, check out our new exhibits, and find out about upcoming activities.
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