Members’ Night 2019

For one night each year, Academy researchers, scientists and educators welcome members behind the scenes for exciting activities that showcase what the Academy’s experts do every day! On Friday, October 18, members of the Academy had the chance to meet our staff, see our collections and experience the breadth and depth of work that takes place behind the scenes. Below is a selection of our favorite photos from this exciting night!

Young boy smiles at Eddie the T. rex, the Academy's mascot

Members’ Night is a family-friendly open house event where Academy members can explore both our public museum galleries and the collections and research labs that are located behind the scenes. The Academy mascot, Eddie the T. rex, was spotted roaming the hallways in search of hugs and high-twos!

Staff in the invertebrate paleo collection show specimens to young members

Members examined specimens from the Academy’s Invertebrate Paleontology Collection — the oldest of its kind in North America! They also learned more about the digitization process to make the collection available online.

Scientist shows insect specimen to group of adults

Members took a look at record album covers featuring insects alongside corresponding specimens from the Academy’s Entomology Collection.

Young boy does experiment with scientist

With scientists from the Patrick Center for Environmental Research, members learned how environmental policy, planning and innovation help protect the Delaware River Watershed and all our waterways. They learned what aquatic insects can tell us about the quality of our water and used microscopes to observe the bugs up close. They also learned about the importance of the water cycle while making water cycle bracelets and observing demonstrations.

Two young girls dig for shells in a sandy pit

Hosted by the Malacology Department, the shell beach is one of Members’ Night’s most popular activities.

Ornithologist shows bird specimens to adults

In ornithology, members had the chance to explore the Academy’s world-renowned bird collection, learn about unique scientific research specimens, examine avian parasites up close and see how our ornithologists prepare bird specimens for the museum’s scientific collections.

Three young children look at live animal, held by Academy educator

Members were on the lookout for live animal encounters throughout the evening.

Mom and child look at specimen in jar

The Academy is grateful for the support of our wonderful members, and we love celebrating our work with you every year during Members’ Night. Thank you for an amazing evening!

Text by Mary Alice Hartsock; Photos by Five Five Collective for ANS


  1. love the museum as I always did for the past 30 plus years I been going, However maybe you can work on making the museum more accessible to minorities/black kids . you have the funds to have a van or truck whatever to go around to underserved public schools. libarities etc to help bring the magic and wonder of the museum to kids and adults who have never been

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