Media Release: Shark Week Coasts into the Greensboro Science Center

GREENSBORO, NC — The Greensboro Science Center (GSC) is celebrating the 30th anniversary of Discovery Channel’s Shark Week from Monday, July 23 – Saturday, July 28 with crafts, education stations and games from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. daily. In addition to ongoing activities, including coloring pages, temporary tattoos and photos with Finny (the GSC’s shark mascot), each day of the week will be themed around a unique educational opportunity. Daily themes are as follows:

Shark WeekMonday, July 23
Munch, Munch Monday
Learn what sharks like to eat and how they snag their snacks!

Tuesday, July 24
Toothful Tuesday
Test your shark smarts with a round of “Myth or Tooth” trivia!

Wednesday, July 25
Wonders Wednesday
Explore sharks’ super powers – like their ability to detect electricity!

Thursday, July 26
Thoughtful Thursday
Discover the importance of shark conservation: Why do we need sharks, and how can we help them?

Friday, July 27
Freaky Friday
Learn about the strangest and most unusual sharks in the sea!

Saturday, July 28
Supreme Saturday
Find out which sharks are the biggest, fastest, oldest, and more!

The GSC’s aquarium is home to four species of shark: sandbar sharks, blacktip sharks, bamboo sharks, and blacknose sharks. Sharks have been selected by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) as a signature species for SAFE (Saving Animals From Extinction). SAFE focuses the collective expertise of AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums to save signature species by increasing direct conservation spending as well as increasing work in the field and within zoos and aquariums, and through public engagement. Shark Week is one example of the GSC’s involvement in this vital conservation effort.

Shark Week activities are included with general admission to the Greensboro Science Center. General admission is $13.50 for adults ages 14 – 64, $12.50 for children ages 3 – 13, and $12.50 for seniors ages 65+. Children 2 and under and Greensboro Science Center Members are free.

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The Greensboro Science Center is a premier family attraction in North Carolina that offers the state’s first accredited inland aquarium, a hands-on science museum, an accredited Animal Discovery Zoological Park, a state-of-the-art OmniSphere Theater, and SKYWILD, an animal-inspired treetop adventure park. The GSC is also NC’s only dually accredited AZA (Association of Zoos and Aquariums) and AAM (American Alliance of Museums) science attraction – an honor only 14 attractions in the nation can claim. The Greensboro Science Center is located at 4301 Lawndale Drive in Greensboro and is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization. For more information, visit www.greensboroscience.org.

Volunteer Spotlight: Sam H.

At the Greensboro Science Center, we are honored to welcome approximately 750 volunteers each year, giving a cumulative 36,000+ hours of their time. With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, our volunteers help us carry out our mission each day, educating our visitors about our animals and exhibits and inspiring them to learn more.

This week, we’d like to introduce you to Sam H. Sam has been volunteering with us for just over a year.

Sam H

I have been a volunteer for one year, as of June, working as an Exhibit Guide in SciPlay Bay and Health Quest. There are also opportunities for me to work at special events like Pumpkin Palooza and the Tuxedo Trot. I tend to volunteer my required shifts and do more than required during the summer!

 

What drew me into volunteering is that I love to work with the public and children. My school, Wesleyan Christian Academy encourages us to volunteer and help the public.

 

Volunteering provides many funny experiences for us.  At the Tuxedo Trot 5K, I was cheering on people and we got to the end of the race. I thought there were some runners still coming and instead it was volunteers and I had no idea it was them! So I was cheering for them and excited for them to make the finish line. Then once I realized they were volunteers, we laughed!

 

What makes being part of the Volunteer Program rewarding for me is I get to serve the community. It’s also fun because I am in the know as to what happens at GSC before the public gets to know!

Volunteer Spotlight: Marlene D.

At the Greensboro Science Center, we are honored to welcome approximately 750 volunteers each year, giving a cumulative 36,000+ hours of their time. With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, our volunteers help us carry out our mission each day, educating our visitors about our animals and exhibits and inspiring them to learn more.

This week, we’d like you to meet Marlene D. Marlene is currently our longest serving active volunteer!

Marlene D.

I have been volunteering for about 24 years anywhere from one to three days a week as an Exhibit Guide or for special events.

 

I have always enjoyed interacting with the public and telling them about an exhibit so they can get full enjoyment and education. I previously worked as a Zoo Docent until experiencing health issues and the doctor suggested that I work indoors instead. I have appreciated the opportunity to work in a variety of areas.

 

I discovered that I get a real thrill out of working with children and seeing their smiling faces telling me that they are having a great time at the Science Center. About three months ago, a young girl walked down the hallway looking around in wonder and said, “This is the most wonderful place in the whole world”. It was her first time at GSC!

Saints, Snakes and Stout: A St. Patrick’s Day Post

Cotton Mouth 3O0A0908Do you know why one of Indiana Bones’ favorite vacation destinations is Ireland? Our resident paleontologist and ophidiophobic (snake phobia) loves Ireland because Ireland does not have any native snakes. Legend states St. Patrick, the Christian missionary, rid Ireland of all snakes in the fifth century. Upon being attacked by a slithering band of snakes he chased all of Ireland’s snakes to the sea1. While there is no doubt this is folklore, there is some truth to it. Ireland’s fossil records indicate snakes never inhabited the lush, verdant country. Researchers believe that Ireland was too cold for the reptiles during the Ice Age 10,000 years ago and with no land bridge to a neighboring country the legless species lacked the mobility to travel to Ireland2. The country did have a land bridge to England but it was overtaken by ocean long before snakes could make their way across. Sure, sea snakes could get there, but it would be too cold for their liking. While various mammal species made their way to Ireland in the past, their slithering counterparts in the animal kingdom did not make the journey.

Unlike Ireland we have many snake species in the Americas. They come in a variety of colors and sizes. From the bright green emerald tree boa, to the small worm snake these highly diverse animals fulfill a niche in our world.  With the ability to stealthily traverse on land, burrow through soil and sand and slither up trees, these ambush predators are key players in their community. They help maintain rodent, bat, frog and even other snake populations. Our native species are middle-order animals, meaning they are both prey to some animals and predators to others. They help to maintain a balance in the food web.

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day and in celebration of the green country we would like to spotlight the emerald tree boa.

Emerald Tree Boa 3O0A0984

The GSC is home to a young, male, emerald tree boa. This vibrantly colored, non-venomous snake is native to South America. There it can be found in lowland rainforests, typically resting in the trees above water. Their bright green color helps them blend into their lush leafy background and their white pattern mimics sunlight coming through the tree leaves. They are constrictors that prey on lizards, rodents and bats.

Ireland may be known for its lack of reptiles, but it is even more famous for its beverage of choice, beer, and more specifically, Irish stout! Legend even says St. Patrick had his own brewer. And we are all familiar with Ireland’s most famous brewery, Guinness, whose humble beginnings go back to Arthur Guinness3 in 1756.

Brews & BubblesThe Greensboro Science Center is uniting the preservation of species and hoppy beverages at our annual Brews & Bubbles. Join us on April 23rd for an evening of great beers, wines and ciders, yummy snacks, live entertainment and explore the GSC’s collection of critters. Not to worry, all snakes at the GSC are safely nestled in enclosures! But do take a moment to visit the Emerald Tree Boa and see just how majestic these specialized reptiles really are!


 

  1. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/03/140315-saint-patricks-day-2014-snakes-ireland-nation/
  2. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2008/03/080313-snakes-ireland_2.html
  3. http://guides.ie/blog/history-beer-ireland

A Gift for the Kids: Pajama Jam Tickets!

Big Bang BoomPajama Jam tickets make a great gift for the lucky child in your life. Featuring Big Bang Boom and an evening of farm-themed fun with Chick-fil-A, it’s an event they – and you – won’t want to miss! The 2016 Pajama Jam is January 22 from 6 – 9pm at the Greensboro Science Center.

Pajama JamPajama Jam is a fun-filled, after-hours party sponsored by Chick-fil-A designed especially for families with children ages 12 and younger. Participants are encouraged to wear their favorite jammies and join us as we dance to the rockin’ tunes of Big Bang Boom while enjoying plenty of farmyard fun!

Chick-fil-AGuests will have the opportunity to explore the museum and aquarium, and watch a special show in the OmniSphere Theater. Play games like bean bag toss, pin the tire on the tractor, clothes pin drop, and more! Participate in activities including face painting and balloon animals – and meet the Chick-fil-A cows as they graze through the Greensboro Science Center! Chick-fil-A will also provide tasty treats (included in ticket price) for all Pajama Jam guests.

Tickets are $10 for Greensboro Science Center Members and $12 for Non-Members. They can be purchased online, on site or over the phone at 336-288-3769. We’ll see you there!

Want to see what to expect? Check out photos from our 2015 Pajama Jam.

It’s a Panda Party!

We mean red pandas… which aren’t actually pandas at all, but that’s a different story…

On Saturday, September 20, 2014, we’re celebrating International Red Panda Day with our very own red panda, Taiji! This isn’t your typical Science Center event… this is a truly unique celebration designed entirely around red pandas FOR red pandas, with all proceeds being donated to the Red Panda Network to help save wild red pandas and preserve their habitat.

What do we mean, an event designed around red pandas? Well, take, for instance, the activities…

Upon entering the Greensboro Science Center, each Red Panda Day guest – both kids and kids at heart – will receive a passport. Your mission over the next two hours: travel through the five countries that make up the red panda’s native range, complete each country’s activity, game or challenge and earn your Red Panda Ranger Badge.

Panda Patterns
Red pandas have very distinctive patterns on their fur. Use hair chalk to create a distinctive pattern of your own!

Red Panda Facial Markings

Red Panda Facial Markings

Predator/Prey Pong
Red pandas eat bamboo… earn one point. Snow leopards eat red pandas… lose one point. How many points can you score in Predator/Prey Pong?

Predator/Prey Pong

Predator/Prey Pong

Arboreal Obstacles
Red pandas spend most of their time in the trees and so, are adept climbers. Do you have what it takes to complete our arboreal obstacle course?

Red Panda Balancing Act

Red pandas have awesome balance… how about you?

Memory
A red panda version of the classic game, Memory… flip over cards two at a time and match the red panda’s range, habitat, food source, and more. How many turns does it take you to match them all?

Mystery Box
First, get a clue. Then, get a FEEL for the answer. Touch the items in the mystery box and see if you figure out the answer to our red panda riddles.

Of course, in addition to red panda recreations, Red Panda Day guests will also enjoy a delicious breakfast, special behind-the-scenes tours, sweet souvenirs, the chance to win prizes (like a red panda encounter!!!) during random drawings, general admission to the Greensboro Science Center for the remainder of the day, and that wonderful feeling that comes with the knowledge you are helping to save a species.

Tickets are $30/person for GSC Members and $40/person for Non-Members. All proceeds benefit the Red Panda Network.

Click here for more information or to purchase tickets.