Thursday, October 18, 2012

Natural History Museum of Utah

By Victoria Saley from obSEUSSed

Utah’s historic dinosaurs, land forms and artifacts appear larger than life at the Natural History Museum of Utah. It may remind you of the movie Night at the Museum with dinosaur fossils looming over you. In fact, the design of the building and exhibits are so modern and professional it reminds me of the museums I’ve visited in New York City and Chicago. This is a museum I’d be proud to take my friends and relatives to when they visit Salt Lake.  It’s also a perfect place to take your kids during school breaks or even take a date.


This state-of-the-art, technology-friendly (they have free wi-fi and interactive programs) building is located next to Red Butte Garden near the University of Utah.  I recently had the opportunity to visit the museum during a blogger’s tour.  The museum kindly gave us a 4-pack of day passes to give away on I Heart Salt Lake so one of you can take your family to check it out for yourselves. (See giveaway details below.)

NMHU collage obSEUSSed 3

Dinosaurs:  Of course, my son loved the dinosaur exhibits.  He fit perfectly in the footprint of a dinosaur.  He also loved watching a room full of paleontologist working on newly found fossils.  Then he got to dig for fossils himself in their outdoor gravel box (they also have an indoor digging pit in a large, well ventilated, room).


They have a whole room of archived exhibits. They open this room occasionally to  the public for a behind-the-scenes look.


You will find hands-on exhibits around every corner teaching about earlier life in Utah.

NMHU collage obSEUSSed 2
And because I’m ObSEUSSed with children’s books, I really enjoyed The Chickadee Society {Preschool Adventure Club}.
This preschool program takes place the fourth Thursday of every month from 10:30-11:00 a.m. for children ages 3-6. They incorporate science-themed stories, hands-on-activities, gallery exploration and more. We were able to attend the September class.  It must be the coolest preschool room ever with Utah’s red rock caves to crawl in, a water feature to catch play fish and bug center with real bugs and dress-up costumes.  The program is included with admission. During the tour another mom and I realized that the yearly family membership is only $95, which is cheaper than an average month of preschool fees. You could take your child here several times a month and explore a different section each time making the membership a great value.


The museum has a large variety of events for children, parents, families and schools. Choose from workshops, field trips, sleepovers, day camps, birthday parties, the Bug Brigade (see the kids loving the frog in the above photo) and more. Click here to see their current schedule of events.
Natural History Museum of Utah at the Rio Tinto Center, 301 Wakara Way, Salt Lake City, UT 84108
Open daily from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm, Wednesdays 10:00 am – 9:00 pm. 
Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Day passes: Children 2 & under are free. Ages 3-adult vary $8-11. A yearly membership for a family is $95.

Pass Giveaway:
The winner will receive four individual day-passes to attend the Natural History Museum of Utah. The passes are valid through 12/31/12. Winner must be 18 years of age or older and have a valid Utah address.  Winner will be contacted and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be selected.

To enter the giveaway fill out the form below.
Giveaway is closed. The winner is Audrey Merrill
Giveaway end at midnight on October 24th.
Do you want a few bonus entries?

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Disclosure: I was given a free tour of the museum, provided lunch and two additional day passes. All opinions are 100% my own. I will happily return with all my kids and pay to attend this amazing museum.