kudos affiliates

Congrats to these Affiliates on their recent accomplishments.


Mystic Seaport announced today it has received a $1 million gift from the Thompson Family Foundation to support the Thompson Exhibition Building, the Museum’s first new exhibition building in more than four decades. The Thompson Building opened to visitors on September 24, 2016. The Thompson Family Foundation’s latest gift caps the $15.3 million required to fund the exhibition building and the McGraw Gallery Quadrangle project. This fundraising effort was scheduled to conclude on December 31. The first exhibit to be featured in the Thompson Building will be “Sea-Change,” a dramatic presentation of a range of beautiful and unique objects drawn from the collections of Mystic Seaport.

Massachusetts officials have announced state funding for an exhibit at a new museum highlighting the life and work of a renowned children’s book author. The two state senators representing Springfield, Eric Lesser and James Welch, said Wednesday that $200,000 has been earmarked for a bilingual literacy exhibit in the new Dr. Seuss Museum. Springfield Museums President Kay Simpson said momentum is building toward the opening of the new museum in just a few months. The museum will be the only one in the world devoted exclusively to Theodore Geisel, the Springfield native who authored the Dr. Seuss children’s books.

IMLS announced four STEMeX awards– the first of their kind for the agency – which fund research on informal educational approaches that make use of the knowledge and skills of community Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) experts. These long anticipated awards generated a tremendous response from the field, and all of us at IMLS are anxious to see the results of this important work. Researchers from the High Desert Museum, Oregon State University Cascades and the Deschutes Public Library, will answer questions including: How might the experts’ use of storytelling impact rural families’ talk during STEM activities, understanding of the nature of science, engagement, and attitudes?

Awards and Recognition

Antonio “Tony” J. Busalacchi, president of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), will be inducted next week into the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) during a ceremony in Washington, D.C. Election to the NAE honors those who have made outstanding contributions to engineering research, practice, or education. It is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to an engineer and those working at the intersection of science and engineering. Busalacchi was elected for his contributions to “understanding of tropical oceans in coupled climate systems via remotely sensed observations and for international leadership of climate prediction/projection research.”

The Arab American National Museum’s (AANM) founding director, Dr. Anan Ameri, has been selected for induction into the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame. Ameri is one of nine women chosen, from among more than 110 nominees, to receive the honor  as a member of the 33rd class of the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame, part of the Michigan Women’s Historical Center in Lansing.

The Greensboro Historical Museum has received a national award from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) for the exhibition “Warnersville: Our Home, Our Neighborhood, Our Stories.” The Leadership in History Award is the most prestigious form of recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history.


November in Affiliateland

Is the Smithsonian in your neighborhood? Probably so! These Affiliates are bringing the Smithsonian to communities across the U.S. in November!


From Clay to Copper: The Story of the Etowah Valley, a new exhibition at the Tellus Science Museum, includes 64 Native American artifacts and minerals from the National Museum of Natural History, in Cartersville beginning 11.5.


Washington, D.C.

National Museum of American History features Plimoth Plantation (Plymouth, MA) in Waking the Ancestors: Recovering the Lost and Sacred Sounds of Colonial America, a public program at the museum on 11.5-6.



Daniel Piazza, curator at the National Postal Museum will present a lecture on communicating during the Revolutionary War at St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum, in St. Augustine 11.10.



Rebel, Jedi, Princess, Queen: Star Warsâ„¢ and the Power of Costume opens at the Denver Art Museum, in Denver 11.13. The exhibition was developed by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service in partnership with the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art and Lucasfilm Ltd.



The Civil War Museum, part of Kenosha Public Museums, will display Changing America:  The Emancipation Proclamation, 1863 and the March on Washington, 1963, an exhibition presented by the National Museum of African American History and Culture and the National Museum of American History, in Kenosha 11.16.

Button for the 1941 March National Museum of American History, gift of Rita Jaros

Button for the 1941 March
National Museum of American History, gift of Rita Jaros

Kudos Affiliates

Congrats to these Affiliates on their recent accomplishments!

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) announced grants for 206 museum projects totaling $21,149,000, including the following Affiliate initiatives:

Historic Annapolis (Annapolis, MD) Award: $150,000.00
Historic Annapolis will design, fabricate, and install the proposed exhibition, “A History of Annapolis in 99 Objects.” The exhibition will tell the broad, inclusive story of Maryland’s capital city.

National Museum of American Jewish History (Philadelphia, PA)  Award: $150,000.00
The National Museum of American Jewish History (NMAJH) will develop a small-scale traveling exhibition to broaden access to stories of the American Jewish people for schools, synagogues, and museums across the country. “Let My People Go: The Movement to Free Soviet Jews” will feature custom curricula, a programming handbook, and pre-designed marketing materials to inspire dialogue on contemporary issues of immigration, refugees, and religious freedom.

Denver Museum of Nature and Science (Denver, CO)  Award: $128,506.00
The Denver Museum of Nature and Science will deliver, expand, and evaluate whole-school museum education experiences for all students and teachers in elementary and K-8 schools in two under-resourced school districts.

Mystic Seaport (Mystic, CT)  Award:  $24,971.00
Mystic Seaport will extend the reach, impact, and diversity of its first-person interpretation program which is a hallmark of the museum experience. New interpreters will conduct extensive historical research, participate in professional development opportunities, and create costumes to develop their characters.

Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico (San Juan, PR)  Award:  $25,000.00
The Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico will continue its Art and Technology for Youth at Risk initiative which provides learning opportunities for at-risk young adults by integrating museum programming and exhibits, and partner organization programming, into an afterschool program.

San Diego Natural History Museum  (San Diego, CA)  Award:  $148,239.00
The San Diego Natural History Museum will design a program entitled SPECTRUM, which will provide a structured opportunity for high-functioning, verbal young adults (ages 18-25) with autism spectrum disorder to collaborate with their peers in practicing social skills and participate in organized fieldtrips.

National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium (Dubuque, IA)  Award:  $148,795.00
The National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium will catalog, inventory, document, and re-house approximately 6,200 undocumented or under-documented objects in their collection, representing 35 percent of their total collection. This documentation is critical to the continued understanding of the people and cultures of the Mississippi River.

B & O Railroad Museum  (Baltimore, MD)  Award:  $150,000.00
The B&O Railroad Museum will undertake the restoration and treatment of B&O #51, the first streamlined diesel locomotive put into service, which in 1937 represented a major shift in locomotive technology. Project activities include research and documentation, asbestos abatement, preservation of original materials, inspection and restoration of subassemblies, and restoring original locomotive finishes to their 1937 appearances.

Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Seminole Indian Museum  (Clewiston, FL)  Award:  $105,600.00
The Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Seminole Indian Museum will install high-density moveable shelving in the museum’s main building vault. The proposed shelving will double the vault’s storage space, allowing materials to be properly stored and creating much-needed room for future collection growth.

Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture (Seattle, WA)  Award: $148,531.00
In anticipation of a new museum facility, the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture at the University of Washington will improve the collection care, management, and accessibility of its malacology (shell) collection, considered the most extensive and valuable in the Pacific Northwest.

Arizona State Museum, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ)  Award:  $149,164.00
The Arizona State Museum will re-house 2,000 archeological basketry specimens with high scholarly significance and interest to the museum and its audiences and will treat 116 high-priority archeological items identified as unstable and threatened with further deterioration.

San Diego Museum of Man  (San Diego, CA)  Award:  $149,534.00
The San Diego Museum of Man (SDMoM) will improve stewardship and collection management of its ethnographic weapons collection by re-housing 3,000 artifacts for long-term preservation.

Museum of History and Industry (Seattle, WA)  Award:  $149,977.00
The Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI) will create high-quality digital images with metadata tags for 5,287 artifacts, archival materials, photographs, and oral histories relating to the diverse history of the Seattle and Puget Sound region. Images will be searchable by the public and staff through the museum’s online collections management system and through a shared regional online repository hosted by the University of Washington.

Plimoth Plantation (Plymouth, MA)  Award:  $149,245.00
Plimoth Plantation will partner with Mystic Seaport’s Henry B. du Pont Preservation Shipyard to restore 27 planks along the lower port side of the Mayflower II’s hull as part of the larger effort to return the vessel to U.S. Coast Guard operational status, scheduled for 2020.

San Diego Air & Space Museum  (San Diego, CA)  Award:  $150,000.00
The San Diego Air & Space Museum will improve its management of and broaden access to 30,000 collection objects in phase two of its Great Explorations project. Project activities will include connecting this database to the museum’s digital asset management system; and making the data and images available via Flickr, the museum’s website, and its online catalog, AeroCat.

Denver Museum of Nature and Science (Denver, CO)  Award:  $149,975.00
The Denver Museum of Nature and Science will conduct conservation stabilization treatment for 375 high-priority objects in its American Ethnology Collection of materials from 420 American Indian tribes, including clothing and accessories, cradleboards, musical instruments and toys, kachina, household items, horse gear and travel, and weapons.

Denver Art Museum (Denver, CO)  Award:  $128,065.00
The Denver Art Museum will catalog, document, migrate, and rehouse 425 electronic media artworks in four of its art and design collections. This collection includes artworks with video, audio, digital image, software, and website components contained on a range of storage media including videotapes, audiotapes, optical media, computer diskettes, and external hard drives.

Michigan State University Museum  (East Lansing, MI)  Award:  $50,607.00
Michigan State University Museum will conduct general conservation surveys of the museum’s natural science and cultural collections and begin to implement short-term care and rehousing improvements.

Springfield Museums (Springfield, MA)  Award:  $106,592.00
The Springfield Museums will stabilize and restore twenty Tiffany stained glass windows that are original to the main facade of the historic George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum which opened in 1896. The goals of the project are to stabilize the windows and to restore them, as closely as possible, to their original appearance and condition, using appropriate conservation techniques and materials.

International Museum of Art & Science (McAllen, TX)  Award:  $24,946.00
The International Museum of Art & Science will improve the storage conditions for their framed art collection of approximately 600 pieces. The museum will purchase five mobile art racks and nineteen art storage shelves that will be installed in the museum’s storage room.

History Colorado (Denver, CO) has been awarded a $2.2 million grant from the National Science Foundation’s Advancing Informal STEM Learning program. The project explores the integration of Native American knowledge with Western science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The five-year grant will engage 128,000 STEM learners, educators, and experts across Colorado and Utah in: cutting-edge archaeological and ethnobotanical field work;  interactive exhibits and videos; public programs for families and adults; statewide K-12 education outreach programs, digital badges, and teacher training; and findings for museums, tribes, and scientists.

University Corporation For Atmospheric Research (UCAR) (Boulder, CO) has been awarded a $228,110 grant from NSF. The project, Integrating Indigenous and Western Knowledge to Transform Learning and Discovery in the Geosciences, uses the principles of collective impact to create new partnerships between tribal communities and STEM institutions that promote the participation and inclusion of Native American scientists in the geosciences.


Affiliates in the news: September/October edition

Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor (Honolulu, HI)
Civil Geeks: Aviation Museum Tackles Astronomy
Adjacent to the World War II fighter jets at the Pacific Aviation Museum is a classroom not many visitors know even exists. The facility is used for student groups usually interested in aviation and flight simulators but lately the museum is going beyond the limits of our earth’s atmosphere and exploring objects in deep space. The workshop is called Astrophotography and geared for students from 5th to 8th graders. According to the PAM press release, “The workshop is part of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory’s Youth Capture the Colorful Cosmos III (YCCC III) program, offering students the opportunity to research, explore, and photograph the cosmos using telescopes owned and maintained by the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.”

National Museum of Industrial History (Bethlehem, PA)
VIDEO- PBS39 FOCUS (NMIH story runs from 11:13-19:29)

Springfield Museums (Springfield, MA)
Smithsonian link huge boost for Springfield (Editorial)
This is a win-win for everyone and truly a historic occasion. The efforts of political leaders, museum officials and MassMutual Foundation will be rewarded, every time the Smithsonian brings its message to Springfield or tells its story to an America and world that needs to hear.

Springfield Museums Named Smithsonian Affiliate (Radio spot)
WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Springfield Museums President Kay Simpson

Springfield Museums Named Smithsonian Affiliate
For us to continue to develop a culturally rich community, it is important that all of us — especially our children — have access to some of the world’s most treasured art collections, artifacts, and perspectives of the most renowned experts in the country,” said Roger Crandall, chairman, president, and CEO of MassMutual.  “The MassMutual Foundation’s support of the partnership between the Springfield Museums and the Smithsonian helps strengthen the cultural fabric of our community, and we are proud to do our share to provide opportunities that inspire people to never stop learning and growing.”

Springfield Museums named Smithsonian affiliate; new opportunities for exhibits, education
The Smithsonian Institution has named the Springfield Museums an affiliate, opening up new opportunities for cultural and historical exhibits and a wealth of educational programs.

LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes (Los Angeles, CA)
Smithsonian Highlights Latino Players as Part of Baseball’s Racial History
“The stories that are resurfacing as a result of this project are prime examples of its importance,” Caballero said. “Without regional projects and a strong national project, such as the Smithsonian’s ‘Latinos and Baseball’ project, most of these stories, as well as the history of their communities, would not be documented for current and future generations.”

National Museum of African American History and Culture opening celebration
DuSable Museum of African American History (Chicago,IL)
DuSable Museum Celebrates Opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture with special Watch Party and Smithsonian Poster Exhibition
The DuSable Museum of African American History will “Lift Every Voice” and celebrate the Grand Opening of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture on Saturday, September 24, 2016, by hosting a free “Watch Party” beginning at 8:30 AM. The event will take place at the Museum located at 740 East 56th Place (57th Street and South Cottage Grove Avenue) in Chicago.

Watch Party: Grand Opening of New Smithsonian Museum

National black history museum could spur interest locally
On Chicago’s South Side, it will be viewed during a free watch party Saturday at the 55-year-old DuSable Museum of African American History, one of the oldest museums of its kind. Officials there — and at other local and regional venues that offer more local stories on the struggles and contributions of blacks in the United States — expect the new national museum to spur interest and steer more visitors their way.

Chicago woven throughout Smithsonian’s new National Museum of African American History
If you can’t make the trip to Washington D.C. for the opening ceremony, Chicago’s Smithsonian affiliate invites you to watch on its big screen. The viewing party starts at 8:30 a.m. Saturday morning, at Dusable Museum

DuSable Museum of African American History (Chicago, IL) and Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (Birmingham, AL)
African-American museum to open in Washington
DuSable Chief Curator Leslie Guy says the new museum has “become an incredible opportunity in terms of raising awareness.” In Alabama, Birmingham Civil Rights Institute President Andrea Taylor says that after experiencing the national museum, visitors “will want to know more about what’s happening in their local community.”

Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (Birmingham, AL)
New African American History Museum prepared to deal with visitors’ emotions
Museums have to be prepared to deal with a variety of emotions when dealing with charged subjects like slavery and civil rights, said Priscilla Hancock Cooper, vice president of institutional programs at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute in Alabama. After going through the Birmingham museum, visitors are offered a chance to talk with volunteers — many of whom lived through the turbulent civil rights era in Birmingham — to help process their thoughts and feelings, Cooper said.

Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture (Baltimore, MD)
6 Things to Do If You Don’t Have a Timed Pass for the National African American History Museum
Baltimore’s Reginald F. Lewis Museum is hosting its own event Saturday in celebration of the grand opening of the newest Smithsonian. During the event, parents and kids can join award-winning illustrator Shadra Strickland for storytime of her book, “Bird,” a tale about a young boy facing family struggles. A drawing workshop with the artist will follow.Participants will also receive a free commemorative poster, while supplies last.

B&O Railroad Museum (Baltimore, Maryland) (VIDEO)
Hometown Hotspot
The B & O Railroad Museum is hosting a special exhibition to celebrate the opening of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture on September 24, 2016. This Saturday is also the Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Live Day when you can sign up and get free admission to the B&O Railroad Museum!

Birthplace of Country Music Museum (Bristol, Virginia) (VIDEO)
“Lift Every Voice” Concert Series and Museum Day Live! at Birthplace of Country Music Museum Sept. 24
This year’s Museum Day Live! is special as BCMM will also be honoring the Grand Opening of the Smithsonian’s newest museum, the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) in Washington, DC. To celebrate this opening, the museum will offer several programs throughout the day as part of the NMAAHC’s “Lift Every Voice” initiative

The African American Museum in Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA)
New museum on National Mall tells sweeping story of black experience – with a Philly twist
Says Lonnie Bunch, the national museum’s founding director: “I think the museum needs to be a place that finds the right tension between moments of pain and stories of resiliency and uplift.” The African American Museum in Philadelphia, at Seventh and Arch Streets, a Smithsonian affiliate, will host a video “watch party” of opening-day celebrations for the mothership on the mall, said Patricia Aden, AAMP president and CEO. 

Senator John Heinz History Center (Pittsburgh, PA)
The biggest challenge in opening up a national museum about African American history? How to talk about slavery
“You can’t cover everything of the black experience, and you’re always going to find someone who says something should be there or should not be there,” said Black, the director of African American programming at the Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh.

Smithsonian magazine’s Museum Day LIVE!
Idaho Museum of Natural History (Pocatello, Idaho)
Idaho Museum of Natural History joins Smithsonian magazine’s 12th Annual Museum Day Live!

History Colorado (Denver, CO)
Revel in the Smithsonian Legacy on Museum Day Live!
“We are proud to be a Smithsonian Affiliate and celebrate Smithsonian Day Live with museums all across the country,” says the director of education at History Colorado, JJ Rutherford.

The Rockwell Museum (Corning, NY)
The Rockwell Museum Join Smithsonian Magazine’s 12th Annual Museum Day Live!
As the only Smithsonian Affiliate in Upstate, NY, The Rockwell actively seeks ways in which we can bring dynamic programming from the Smithsonian Institution to Corning and the Finger Lakes…  This year’s Museum Day Live! marks the Grand Opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture. The Rockwell joins in support of this momentous occasion by displaying a traveling exhibit, A Place for All People, a historic poster exhibit that explores African American history, culture, and community.

Rhode Island Historical Society (Providence, RI)
Over 20 R.I. museums offer free admission Saturday
Many of the exhibits, performances, and events will celebrate the National Museum of African American History and Culture, which opens the same day.

The Old Governor’s Mansion (Milledgeville, GA)
Original presidential ballots on display at Old Governor’s Mansion
The Old Governor’s Mansion at Georgia College, a Smithsonian affiliate, will house four original presidential ballots from the election of 1860 to view until Nov. 8. The loans are provided by the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History.

National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium (Dubuque, IA)
Critical Wildlife Conservation and Research Projects Funded by AZA-Accredited Zoos and Aquariums
The Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) today announced AZA Conservation Grants Fund (CGF) grants totaling nearly $250,000 to be awarded to 13 projects. After a competitive review of 79 applications, 13 projects were chosen to be funded for 2016.

Booth Western Art Museum (Cartersville, GA)
Booth nets two top Shining Example Awards
Along the museum’s director of marketing, Tom Shinall, capturing the Rising Star Award, the Booth was named Southeast Tourism Society Escape to the Southeast Travel Attraction of the Year.

Upcountry History Museum (Greenville, SC)
14 Pieces Of Dissected Technology That Will Blow Your Mind
The Smithsonian’s “Things Come Apart” is a traveling exhibition that takes a fascinating look inside the technology we know and love.

These Photos of Deconstructed Devices Reveal Their Hidden Beauty
Both static and kinetic visions of disassembled hardware populate McLellan’s new exhibition, now on view at South Carolina’s Upcountry History Museum, a Smithsonian Affiliate through February 19, 2017. The show will then hit the road traveling to Kansas City first on an ambitious 12-city national tour.

National WWII Museum (New Orleans, LA) and Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex (Titusville, FL)
TripAdvisor Showcases the World’s Best Museums With Travelers’ Choice Awards
“From awe-inspiring art galleries to thought-provoking memorials, Travelers’ Choice Museums provide enlightening experiences whether a traveler is visiting for the first time or the fiftieth…”

Perot Museum of Nature and Science (Dallas, TX) (VIDEO)
Giant Gems of the Smithsonian at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science

Springfield Museums (Springfield, MA)
Museum Mind-Meld
To celebrate a new partnership between the Smithsonian and Springfield Museums, come out on Saturday for the kick-off of Smithsonian Week, with guest speaker John Grant, planetary scientist at the National Air and Space Museum and member of the Mars Rover Team

Stafford Air & Space Museum (Weatherford, OK)
Oklahoma Small-town Promotes Aviation
Named a Smithsonian Affiliate in 2011, the museum started as a simple display case in the Weatherford Airport Terminal. It now displays more than 3,500 artifacts, many of them having logged real time in the atmosphere and beyond it. A number of them are on loan from the Smithsonian, including the pressure suit Stafford wore on Apollo X.

Orange County Regional History Center (Orlando, FL)
Museum curators gather, preserve Pulse history
This touched thousands of lives,” said Michael Perkins, manager of the center’s museum. “We are trying to preserve it for generations.”Perkins said he consulted with experts from the Smithsonian Museums and visited the National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center Site as he prepared his staff for the challenge of preserving Pulse.

forging a connection between America’s industrial past and the innovations of today

The National Museum of Industrial History opened its doors on August 2, 2016. The Smithsonian’s very first Affiliate, the NMIH “forges connections between America’s industrial past and the innovations of today by educating the public and inspiring the visionaries of tomorrow” said NMIH Director, Amy Hollander. PBS39 recently aired this video showing the opening of the museum.

The story on NMIH runs from 11:13-19:29. 

affiliates in the news- end of summer edition

Congrats to these Affiliates making news!  If you have a clipping that highlights a collaboration with the Smithsonian or with a fellow Affiliate, or a clipping that demonstrates leadership in education, innovation, and arts/culture/history/science you’d like to have considered for the Affiliate blog, please contact Elizabeth Bugbee

Birthplace of Country Music Museum (Bristol, VA)
Eric Paslay, Tracy Lawrence Help CMA Songwriters Series Branch Out
New Orleans and Bristol, Virginia, are the latest cities added to the traveling show
On September 8th, country legend Tracy Lawrence along with hit writers Barry Dean (“Pontoon,” “God’s Will”) and Luke Laird (“Last Name,” “Hillbilly Bone”) will perform at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, in Bristol, Virginia. The Songwriters Series show is part of several days of events in Bristol leading up to a highly anticipated college football rivalry game between the Virginia Tech Hokies and the Tennessee Volunteers.

College Park Aviation Museum director with a guest reading a personal mail call letter at the Mail Call opening reception.

College Park Aviation Museum director with a guest reading a personal mail call letter at the Mail Call opening reception.

College Park Aviation Museum (College Park, MD)
New College Park Aviation Museum exhibit showcases history, importance of military mail
“The whole premise of the exhibit is how mail has always been so important to soldiers whether it was back in the Civil War up to present day. This exhibit in particular is loaded with fantastic images,” College Park Aviation Museum Director, Andrea Cochrane Tracey, said. “There are fantastic photographs from as early as the Civil War up to the 2000s and the Iraq War. There is also audio people can listen to, to hear people’s stories. There are flip cards that people can explore different aspects of mail and how it gets delivered. So it’s really a nice mix of great visual stimulation and the text.”

Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum (Ashland, NE)
SAC Aerospace Museum opens new Children’s Learning Center
Designed from “best practices” for STEM learning and innovation in consultation with Smithsonian Institution’s Spark Lab at the American History Museum and Omaha’s Heartland Scenic Studio, the center follows a kinesthetic approach to learning rather than lecture and demonstration.

Western Science Center (Hemet, CA)
Smithsonian exhibit comes to Western Science Center
The exhibit, entitled “H2O Today,” is organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibit Service (SITES). The Western Science Center is a Smithsonian affiliate.

Dr. Bernard K. Means, Director of the Virtual Curation Laboratory of Anthropology at Virginia Commonwealth University, uses a 3D scanner to digitize Max the mastodon at the Western Science Center in Hemet, CA. Thursday, August 4, 2016. FRANK BELLINO, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Dr. Bernard K. Means, Director of the Virtual Curation Laboratory of Anthropology at Virginia Commonwealth University, uses a 3D scanner to digitize Max the mastodon at the Western Science Center in Hemet, CA. Thursday, August 4, 2016.

Museum inspired by water to highlight the resource’s growing value
Indirectly borne from man’s need for safe drinking water, the Western Science Center will host a Smithsonian exhibit on the importance of water for the next three months.

Max the mastodon being digitized into 3-D at Western Science Center
“One of the goals of 3D scanning is to make objects available all over the world,” Means said. “You can go into schools and do public outreach. You can also teach with them.” …Means was at the Western Science Center through a grant from Smithsonian Affiliations.

Mennello Museum of American Art (Orlando, FL)
Things are popping at the Mennello Museum
The museum, in Orlando’s Loch Haven Park north of downtown, is bursting with pop-art pieces on loan from the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. Among the 37 prints on view are works by Andy Warhol, Robert Indiana, Roy Lichtenstein, James Rosenquist and other top-tier names of the pop-art world.

Buffalo Bill Center of the West (Cody, WY)
Lost worlds of Wyoming discussed
Reconstructing lost worlds in the Big Horn Basin is the focus of a new book by authors Kirk Johnson and Will Clyde. The two authors were the featured speakers for the Lunchtime Expedition Series at the Draper Natural History Museum. The lecture took place at the Coe Auditorium in the Buffalo Bill Center of the West on July 28.

The Arab American National Museum aims to share the stories of its diverse population. COURTESY OF THE ARAB AMERICAN NATIONAL MUSEUM

The Arab American National Museum aims to share the stories of its diverse population.

Arab American National Museum (Dearborn, MI)
RADIO INTERVIEW Arab American museum places community’s stories into greater national narrative
Located in Dearborn, the museum opened in 2005, and although it has only been around for little more than a decade, it has been chosen as an affiliate of the Smithsonian.

POV: Defining ‘the Arab’ The intersection of black, Arab and Muslim
For more information, I encourage you to visit the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn (, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, for stories that beautifully weave together the relationships between the Dearborn and Detroit communities.

Virginia Museum of Natural History (Martinsville, VA)
A new dinosaur heading this way
The skeleton has a bit of history behind it, arriving at the Smithsonian in 1917. At that time, it was only the second full size Stegosaurus on display anywhere in the world. It was a cast mold, made from the original bones. Understandably, the original bones aren’t on display, due to their age. In 2003, it came to light that the original casting effort made a few mistakes, when it came to the creature’s structure, so it was recast.

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (Champaign, IL)
La Pelota Is More Than A Ball Game
While we acknowledge achievement at the professional level, let us also continue to learn more about and celebrate baseball in our local communities—from San Juan to San Bernardino—and its role in narrating our valiant and vibrant history of cultural negotiation, struggle and achievement.

Visitors at the Senator John Heinz History Center.

Visitors at the Senator John Heinz History Center.

Senator John Heinz History Center (Pittsburgh, PA)
Clemente autograph, Carnegie artifact among appraised items at event
Manda Kowalczyk from the Smithsonian Institution’s National Postal Museum and representatives of the history center’s new Museum Conservation Center also were on hand with tips about historical preservation of antiques and collectibles.

Smithsonian Learning Labs delivers the world’s archives to local classrooms
Allegheny County was lucky enough to participate in the public beta launch of the platform for the 2015-2016 school year, when 15 local high schools gained access to an electronic database of images from everything the Smithsonian has digitized — more than 1.4 million multimedia resources and growing. With Pittsburgh’s rising fame as a center for technological innovation, and Smithsonian affiliate Heinz History Center located in the Strip District, Allegheny County is an ideal place to research the Learning Lab’s functionality, says Ashley Naranjo, Smithsonian learning initiatives specialist.

National Museum of Industrial History (Bethlehem, PA)
Paying Homage to the Building of America at the National Museum of Industrial History
The first of four galleries, Machinery Hall, is the strongest, with a panoply of machines, many on loan from the Smithsonian, representing the Centennial Exposition.

Arts Around Town: America’s industrial heritage proudly told at new museum in Bethlehem
A Smithsonian affiliate, the National Museum of Industrial History is dedicated to preserving America’s rich industrial heritage. The structure, a restored 40,000-square-foot, 100-year-old former Bethlehem Steel facility, sits on the largest private Brownfield in America.

Industrial museum opens in old Pa. steel plant
Among the benefits of the affiliation are sharing agreements with all 19 Smithsonian museums, which enables exhibition of objects from the national museum collection as well as providing outlets for the industry museum’s objects to be shown outside of Pennsylvania

National Museum of Industrial History. Photo courtesy of the museum.

National Museum of Industrial History. Photo courtesy of the museum.

Museum of Industrial History just needed a push
Much of that excitement was spurred by the museum’s association with the Smithsonian Institution, which shared large exhibits from Machinery Hall at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. Even scaled back, the museum offers an impressive look back at the tools and machines — some of them huge — that helped generations of inventors, entrepreneurs and workers solve problems and create a wide variety of products. 

Long-Delayed Pa. Industrial Museum Finally Set to Open
After nearly two decades of delay that prompted a grand jury investigation, the National Museum of Industrial History in eastern Pennsylvania is slated to open its doors on August 2, reports the Allentown, Pa., Morning Call. The long-anticipated, Smithsonian-affiliated facility will tell the story of America’s industrial revolution with hundreds of exhibits in a 40,000-square-foot former steel plant in Bethlehem, Pa.

Museum of Industrial History open in August
The long-anticipated National Museum of Industrial History — a project so beset by delays that a grand jury investigated why — finally has an opening date.

Industrial museum opening to public after nearly 20 years in the making
It is the first Smithsonian Affiliate museum, and museum President and CEO Amy Hollander says in the release that it will serve as an inspiration to visitors. “We look forward to inspiring tomorrow’s inventors and achievers, educating audiences about the transformation of America from an agrarian society to an industrial giant, and working with public, private, and non-profit partners to attract visitors to explore local and national industrial roots,” she says.

Delayed for years, Bethlehem’s National Museum of Industrial History set for Aug. 2 grand opening
The Smithsonian-affiliated museum will offer hundreds of exhibits that tell the story of the industrial revolution in America. “We look forward to inspiring tomorrow’s inventors and achievers, educating audiences about the transformation of America from an agrarian society to an industrial giant, and working with public, private and nonprofit partners to attract visitors to explore local and national industrial roots,” museum President and CEO Amy Hollander said

Model train enthusiast keeps Bethlehem Steel exhibit on track
The museum, nearly 20 years in the making, will tell the story of how industrialization changed America. The exhibits will include those on loan from the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History as well as artifacts — many local — dedicated to the silk, propane and steelmaking industries.

New history museum to unveil propane industry exhibit
The Smithsonian-affiliated National Museum of Industrial History in Bethlehem, Pa., will debut a permanent propane exhibit when it opens in August.

UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures (Texas)
Former African-American League baseball players share stories
The sports curator of the Smithsonian African-American Cultural and History Museum, as well as the director of the Center for Negro League Baseball Research were also a part of the event.

Historic Annapolis (Maryland)
Comcast Newsmakers video
Historic Annapolis is proud to announce its new designation as a Smithsonian Affiliate. Founded in 1996, Smithsonian Affiliations creates partnerships between the Smithsonian Institution and cultural organizations and museums in order to facilitate educational collaborations, traveling exhibitions, and the loan of historical artifacts.


Museum of Design Atlanta (Georgia)
Museum Of Design Atlanta Opens ‘User-Centered Design’ Exhibits
“Designers have always been aware of their users,” said Museum of Design Atlanta’s executive director Laura Flusche. “But with the rise of design thinking and the emphasis on user interfaces, designers are more and more aware of finding out what the challenges their users are facing. And, that doesn’t ever mean one type of user or one class of users.”

Museum offers ‘out of this world’ photography camp (VIDEO)
Museum of Design Atlanta is offering several half and full-day summer camps for children ages five to fourteen, including one unique camp devoted to Astrophotography.  MODA partnered with the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics program (Youth Capturing the Colorful Cosmos) to bring the camp here, and it gives campers access to Harvard’s telescopes and space images.