The Virginia Museum of Natural History in Waynesboro is set to open next summer and open in 2025

WAYNESBORO, Va. (WHSV) – The Natural History Museum of Virginia in Waynesboro will likely open in 2025, city and museum officials said.

Submitted by Virginia Museum of Natural History(WHSV)

Waynesboro and museum staff said they expect work to begin in about a year, and construction will take about two years.

“There are a lot of things that really matter in a build – things you don’t control like the weather and the supply chain. At the same time, we expect that by the mid-2020s the doors will be open and students will arrive,” said Virginia Museum of Natural History executive director Joe Keiper.

The project was halted in early 2021, when the pandemic caused a suspension of funds.

Despite the delays, City of Waynesboro Director of Tourism and Economic Development Greg Hitchin said the museum would be a big boost for the area.

“It is a cultural resource for the citizens of the city and surrounding areas. It is a tourist attraction for visitors coming off Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway; it’s also a place of learning,” Hitchin said.

Keiper said the exhibits will coincide with Waynesboro’s natural offerings.

“This museum will be directly connected to the South River Reservation here in Waynesboro. These two experiences are essentially married at the hip, one of the same. You can experience natural history right in our exhibit galleries, or you can go straight to the greenway and experience it firsthand,” Keiper said.

This branch will be a second location for the museum, the first being in Martinsville. The museum will feature historical artifacts from the Shenandoah Valley.

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