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Museum’s Exploration Station will temporarily close

The San Bernardino County Museum’s live animal gallery, the Exploration Station, will close for construction upgrades starting September 3.

“This is another step towards achieving our strategic planning goals for the museum facility,” said Museum Director Robert McKernan. “Our former Special Exhibits Hall is being transformed into the Education Center, a facility dedicated to family programming and hands-on activities and exhibits. The transformation includes construction to assure that the complex, including the Exploration Station, meets the latest standards for accessibility.”

The museum recently undertook a comprehensive study leading to a new strategic plan which is now being implemented. The plan includes interpretive emphasis on regional cultural and natural history and increasing public enjoyment of museum collections through programs and exhibits.

“Our new special exhibit program is built around specimens and artifacts in the collections,” explained Jolene Redvale, museum curator of education. “At the same time we have greatly increased public programs related to our collections, staff research, and our southwest, with gallery talks, presentations by curators, guest lectures by visiting experts, Family Fun Days related to exhibits, and workshops for families, adults, and educators. Modernizing the Education Center will be a great step toward improving these services. During construction, we’ll find new spaces for our programs; we do not anticipate any cancellations.”

The museum will continue to be transformed by new construction. Plans are underway for the creation of a new exhibits hall that will interpret the geological wonders of inland Southern California, with an emphasis on fossils and the role of the San Andreas Fault in the development of the region’s unique geography. In addition to the new Hall of Geological Wonders, the museum’s existing galleries will be transformed by modern exhibit techniques and new interpretation emphasizing our southwest.

“This is a very exciting time in the history of the museum,” said McKernan. “We don’t see new construction as disruptive – we see it as an exciting realization of our plans to improve and increase our ability to provide unique and exciting learning experiences for citizens and visitors.”

The San Bernardino County Museum is at the California Street exit from Interstate 10 in Redlands. The museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. General admission is $6 (adult), $5 (student or senior), and $4 (child aged 5 to 12). Children under five and Museum Association members are admitted free. Parking is free. For more information, visit

The San Bernardino County Museum is accessible to persons with disabilities. If assistive listening devices or other auxiliary aids are needed in order to participate in museum exhibits or programs, requests should be made through Museum Visitor Services at least three business days prior to your visit. Visitor Services’ telephone number is (909) 307-2669 ext. 229 / TDD/TTY: (909) 792-1462.

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