Over the years, I have been to many different museums. While the Museum of Natural History in New York City stands out, I had the opportunity to bring 3 of my grandsons to a great museum in Bradenton, Florida this past Thanksgiving holiday.
The kids and adults who attended had a fabulous visit and learned so much. The museum is just the right size- not too big where you get lost and don’t get to see everything. The Bishop Museum is now at the top of my list.
We were greeted by a friendly and knowledgeable staff who recommended that we take the kids to the newest area of the museum, North Education Center.
From the website – “The Mosaic Backyard Universe incorporates the importance of place, change, life, and interaction in all its components. It serves as a portal for learners of all ages to strengthen their awareness of the world around them and how it functions. Outside of The Bishop, they can draw upon these concepts and make connections to the larger experiences they have at the Museum and beyond, furthering their appreciation for science and nature.”
From there, we walked through the first floor permanent exhibition that features fossil evidence of Florida’s earliest animal inhabitants and archaeological material representing Paleo-Indian, Archaic and pre-contact cultures. You will find the Great Hall, Land of Change, Fabulous Florida Seas, Archaic Peoples and the Tallant Gallery brimming with information and objects that reflect the prehistory of Gulf Coast Florida. It was so educational and enjoyable.
The kids (and adults) were so excited to see the Manatee Rehabilitation tank. We enjoyed watching 2 Manatees who are rehabbing from injuries. At the time of this writing, a 3rd Manatee joined the others for rehab. For more information about this wonderful area, please visit: their website here. .
And the grand finale for the day, the Planetarium. Oh, how awesome. The kids and adults were mesmerized.
From the museum website – “The Planetarium at The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature is the premier astronomy education facility on Florida’s west coast and is also a wonderful multimedia theater where we present lectures, films, live music and digital art performances. The theater incorporates unidirectional stadium style seating and a digital 25,000-watt Dolby 5.1 surround sound system. But first and foremost, The Planetarium is a remarkable astronomy education resource, allowing visitors to explore their universe through traditional live star talks and immersive virtual journeys to the far reaches of the cosmos. The full-dome Planetarium’s Digistar 5 dual projection system provides stunning views and allows for exploration of Earth through the use of 200 continually updated satellite datasets of our planet’s land, ocean, atmosphere and climate and live Bing and OnTerra views of the entire planet. The stars in the night sky look fantastic, but there’s so much more, including a digital, three-dimensional map of the entire universe. In the Planetarium, our guests can lift off from Earth and fly beyond our solar system, out of our galaxy and to the very edge of the universe.”
There was so much more to do, but the kids wanted to go swimming and boating…… things you do when you come to Florida for vacation! A visit to this great Museum is a must.
The Bishop Museum
201 10th St. W., Bradenton, FL 34205, (941) 746-4131
The Bishop is closed on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day | Open 10am to 5pm Tuesday-Saturday | Noon to 5pm Sunday. Closed Mondays.
Photos from The Bishop Museum FB page.