This spring break, I had the amazing opportunity to attend Members Night at the Field Museum in Chicago! I am a big museum fan, especially when it comes to the Field Museum (don’t get me started on their animal collection) so it was like Disney World to me! Apparently, I’m not alone in my excitement for this awesome night as a lot of my friends and family have been turning a little green with envy from my tales, so I decided to share them right here!
SPEAKING OF GREEN THERE ARE SOME “GRAPHIC IMAGES” SO BE ADVISED FOR ALL YOU SQUEAMISH PEOPLE OUT THERE!
The evening started at 5pm, but we decided to go to the museum early for their new White City exhibit on the Chicago World’s Fair (my parents are obsessed with the World’s Fair so it was a must-see for us). Since we were already at the museum, I got to watch as the lobby trasnformed from its usual grand opening to a bustling performance area with live music and wandering puppets.
The sides of the lobby became home to tables filled with some behind-the-scenes parafanalia like the museums 3D scanner and 3D printer! That’s right! I saw a 3D printer with my own eyes. With this technology, they were able to take a CT scan of a Peruvian Mummy and print 3D copies of the small trinkets inside, all without unwrapping a single layer! WHAT?!?
Downstairs hosted tables of animal dissections. The Field Museum has samples upon samples of deceased animals in their freezers that they skin, dissect, and preserve for research purposes. In fact, only about 10% of what the Field Museum owns is on display. Scientists from all over the world make their way to Chicago’s Field Museum to study the thousands of specimen that are stored in the museums archives on the top floors.
Speaking of top floors. Guess who got to go there! That’s right! This girl!
Upstairs we found birds…. lots of birds. And some of the museums ornithologists (people who study birds) were there to tell us about their research. It was amazing to have a chance to talk with people who were so passionate about their studies (and so excited to be at work after hours!). The bird archives included more dissections and provided us the opportunity to hold some “reject” specimen.
The insect archives also gave us some furry creatures to hold. Except this time they were alive!
Finally, up on the top floor was the design studios and set construction workshops. It was incredible to see how much work went into getting an exhibit from an idea to the final presentation you see in the museum.
Overall, it was an incredible night for a nerd like myself. Just this one night alone was definitely worth the membership, and I can’t wait until next year!
Posted on March 11th, 2014 by Natalie Sherman
Filed under: Natalie Sherman