New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science
The New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science was founded in 1986 and serves as a public revenue facility of New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs. Located a few miles from Old Town Plaza Albuquerque, this museum takes you on a journey through New Mexico’s past through interactive and high-tech features like an Ice Age Cave, dinosaurs galore, an active volcano, and an enormous Seismosaurus and Tyrannosaurus rex.
The museum’s permanent exhibit halls showcase a journey through time, covering 13.6 billion years ago, the birth of the Universe to the Ice Age, and many more. The eight halls the museum features are as follows:
- Dawn of the Dinosaurs
- Jurassic Age of Super Giants
- New Mexico’s Seacoast
- Age of Volcanoes
- Rise of the Recent-Evolving Grasslands
- Cave Experience
- New Mexico’s Ice Age
Other permanent exhibits include a floor entirely dedicated to astronomy and exploration galleries and an exhibition that include an observation deck with a telescope, an interactive planetarium, a Fossilworks exhibit, a geologic exhibit that showcases minerals of the region, a “Naturalist Center” that homes living animals and insects and a dinosaur exhibition called the Jurassic Super Giants.
The Jurassic Super Giants exhibit displays the complete skeletons of Saurophaganax, Seismosaurus, Stegosaurus, and one leg of Brachiosaurus. The museum’s atrium used to feature Stan’s skeleton; Stan is a Tyrannosaurus Rex that measured 40 feet in length x 12 feet in height, making him the second most significant T Rex ever found. Stan was moved to his current location at Farmington Museum in Farmington, NM.
The bronze statues of “Spike” (a Pentaceratops) and “Alberta” (an Albertosaurus) that stand in the entrance were created by David A. Thomas. These statues were installed in the mid-1980s (Spike in 1985 and Alberta in 1987). Many dinosaur fossils have been found in the state of New Mexico, and a few that are on display in the museum are only known from the region.
The museum also features changing exhibits like Nature Works Discovery Store, the Hope Cafe, the Dynatheather (a 3D theater), the Back to Bones exhibit, STARTUP: Albuquerque, and the Personal Computer Revolution exhibition (which won the Silver Level MUSE Award in the Interactive Kiosk category), Wild Music exhibit, Da Vinci: The Genious, Picturing the Past exhibition, Drugs: Costs and Consequences, Brain: The Inside Story exhibition, and many more.