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Fall Calendar of Events

PHILADELPHIA, June 25, 2013

This fall the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University will take visitors back in time with Dinosaurs Unearthed, an interactive exhibit featuring dramatic, moving, life-size dinosaurs.

More than a dozen roaring, lifelike animatronic dinosaurs, plus dinosaur teeth, claws and horns galore are featured in the exhibit which opens Oct. 12. Kids can play paleontologist at a dig site and inspect the ever-popular coprolite (fossilized dinosaur poop).

In October the Philadelphia Shell Show and Festival offers opportunities to dissect mollusks, shop an international shell market, create shell crafts, and view shell collections by talented collectors and scientists. Rounding out the season will be the second annual Cuisine From the Collections, a cocktail party featuring exotic foods—and familiar treats for picky eaters— inspired by the Academy’s world-class animal and plant collections..

The following exhibits and programs are free with museum admission, except where noted. Check for frequent updates.

Special Exhibit


October 12–March 30, 2014

Roaring, moving, life-size dinosaurs invade the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University for a multi-sensory experience for the whole family. State-of-the-art and scientifically accurate—down to the feathers on T. rexDinosaurs Unearthed features more than a dozen realistic, full-bodied animatronic dinosaurs, as well as skeletons, skulls, claws and horns, real mosasaur and spinosaurus teeth, an Oviraptor egg, and the ever-popular coprolite (dino poop). A dig site for young paleontologists, a Dino Detective touch-screen quiz, chances to control dinosaur movements, and other activities encourage exciting hands-on exploration. Fee in addition to museum admission: Members $3; non-members $5.


Wednesdays, October 2, 9, 23, 30, and 31 and November 6 and 13, 11 a.m.–12 p.m.

Young children and their favorite adults can explore nature through games, crafts, songs and museum adventures at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. Tiny Tot Explorers, ages 3–5, meet from 11 a.m.–12 p.m. on Wednesdays. They learn about trees, seeds and soil; dinosaurs; hibernation; toads and turtles; butterflies and moths; and do experiments galore. An appropriate snack is provided. A single session or the entire series may be reserved. Fee: Members $20 per adult/child pair per session, $130 per adult/child pair for all sessions; nonmembers $25 per adult/child pair per session, $170 per adult/child pair for all sessions. To register, call 215-299-1060.

Lecture and Book Signing With Author John Whitenight


 Tuesday, October 8, 6:30 p.m.

Spend an evening at the Academy of Natural Sciences with author John Whitenight as he explores the role that natural history played in the everyday lives of 19th-century people. Whitenight will share images and information from his book, Under Glass: A Victorian Obsession, a comprehensive study of the incredible array of objects that were arranged and presented as decorative art. Included will be botanical arrangements made from wax and sea shells, as well as domes and cases filled with beautiful birds of every description. Learn how the Victorians not only embraced natural history but also included it in their home décor. Free, registration requested at


Saturday and Sunday, October 19–20, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Thousands of shells will be on display and for sale at the annual Philadelphia Shell Show and Festival at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. The largest show of its kind in the Northeast, the show features competitive displays by collectors and amateur scientists as well as chances to participate in mollusk dissections, make crafts, shop an international shell market, and go behind the scenes to see some of the 10 million specimens in the Academy’s Malacology Collection, the third largest in the world. Free with museum admission.


Saturday and Sunday, October 19–20, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University will offer Girl Scouts the opportunity to earn a new shell patch during the Philadelphia Shell Show and Festival, the largest show of its kind in the Northeast. Girl Scouts will make shell crafts, learn about different shelled creatures, write with squid ink, start a shell collection, play shell games, and much more. Shell Patches can be earned anytime (10 a.m.–5 p.m.) on the day of the workshop. Allow one to two hours to complete the Shell Patch. Fee in addition to museum admission.


Thursday, October 24, 6:30–10 p.m.

Join the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University after hours to watch Them, the “awesomely awful” 1954 cult classic about giant man-eating ants. Academy experts will be onstage to comment on the movie’s many scientific absurdities, similar to Mystery Science Theater 3000. Mega-Bad Movie Nights feature cash bar and snacks, displays of Academy specimens related to the movie and encounters with the museum’s live animals. You must be at least 18 years old to attend and 21 to drink. Members $10, nonmembers $15. Purchase tickets at


Saturday, November 2, 7–10 p.m.

The second annual Cuisine From the Collections is a fun event featuring foods, from the common to the exotic, based on the collections of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. Food stations set up around the museum will feature ingredients not usually found in the kitchen, from bugs and snakes to snails and more! Enjoy unique tastings from notable chefs, gourmet fare, and specialty cocktails—all inspired by the Academy’s 18 million plant and animal specimens. Academy scientists will be on hand with specimens and to answer questions. The Academy’s catering partner, 12th Street Catering, also will provide delicious, more common foods that everyone can enjoy. For more information, visit, call 215-405-1542, or email Tickets $150, Patron $250. Sponsorships available.


Friday Through Sunday, November 29–December 1

Visit the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University to celebrate dinosaurs and their closest living relatives—birds—with a holiday weekend of fun activities. Enjoy dinosaur and live bird shows, a fossil show and teacher-naturalist presentations in the famous Dinosaur Hall. Make a dinosaur craft to take home. Free with museum admission. 


Friday Through Monday, December 27–30, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

 The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University celebrates its most popular attractions with live animal shows, museum specimens, craft making and storytelling during this four-day All-Star Week. Free with museum admission.

Friday, December 27, Dinosaur Day

Academy naturalists bring dinosaurs to life with special presentations in Dinosaur Hall. Test your knowledge of dinosaurs at science stations. Attend a live animal show, play Ask the Expert and make a dinosaur craft to take home.

Saturday, December 28, Animal Day

Academy naturalists will roam the museum with live animals. Watch live animal shows and make an animal craft to take home.

Sunday, December 29, Bug Day

Learn about the secret lives of bugs, and see an array of specimens from the Academy’s world-renowned Entomology Collection. Make a craft to take home.

Monday, December 30, Weird-Thing-in-a-Jar Day

Get a close look at some of the stranger specimens that Academy scientists have collected over the past 200 years. Learn how scientists prepare specimens for study and storage. Make your own weird-thing-in-a-jar craft to take home.

Media Contact

Carolyn Belardo

Director of Public Relations
Phone: 215.299.1043