Children’s Museum reopens in Carson City with new exhibits

Rebecca Hall was hired as director of the Children’s Museum of Northern Nevada.

The Children’s Museum of Northern Nevada in Carson City has reopened under new management with a focus on Nevada fossils and research.

“I have worked hard over the past two months to confidently welcome our community through the doors,” Principal Becky Hall, who was hired in September, said Friday. “The museum has undergone a thorough cleaning and keeping it clean is a top priority.”

The museum opened on Veterans Day weekend, offering free passes to families of veterans.

“We had a successful weekend as news of our opening spread quickly with positive feedback,” Hall said.

The museum’s new exhibits feature fossils from across the Silver State.

“Since I have been an active researcher and paleontologist, I have exhibited fossils spanning 500 million years, from the most complex 500 Ma life, from trilobites to dinosaurs and Ice Age megafauna,” said she declared. “I also like to incorporate fossils into my show-and-tell and allow guests to handle fossils and take a photo next to a sauropod, Apatosaurus, a dinosaur spine on loan from the family’s private collection. Bendy. The nearly one meter high spine is quite impressive.

The museum also highlights Nevadadromeus schmiiti, Nevada’s first named dinosaur that Hall studied with her husband, Josh Bonde, director of the Nevada State Museum.

“Nevadadromeus will be on display at the Children’s Museum until the spring, when it will be brought home to Valley of Fire State Park, where it was discovered,” Hall said.

Besides exhibits, Hall has integrated more STEM and STEAM activities focusing on science and art, math and technology.

“Each week we will have a different themed week. This will keep our activities and exhibits fresh and a new experience with each visit,” she said. “Of course, I chose Dino Discovery Week as our first week. I’ve created a schedule through spring in hopes of incorporating more community partnerships that may be involved in our programming.

Hall said she wanted to encourage a wider age range of child visitors, especially those with an interest in research.

“I have started to rebuild a paleontology lab here at the museum where I can continue my research but hope to gain more interest from high school and college students,” she said. “I started my career as an intern in a paleontology lab, and I would like to provide the opportunity for others interested in paleontology or science to be involved in the scientific process. Although I Having most of my supplies for the lab as I have moved my lab to the museum, I am still looking for funding to complete this project as well as other improvements in the museum.

One of Hall’s main tasks is to find sustainable funding for the continued operations and activities of the museum. In a previous interview with the Call, she had mentioned a possible endowment.

“An endowment is a long-term process that I want to introduce to future investors through our strategic planning, our finances and our successes,” Hall said on Friday. “It will take time, but in the meantime I am building our network, expanding community partnerships and focusing on a strategic financial stability plan for those who wish to invest in the Children’s Museum. There is a bright future here, and community involvement is important at all levels.

Located at 813 N. Carson St., the museum’s new hours are 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. For information, visit https://www.cmnn.org/.

About Carlos V. Mitchell

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