Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum and Leslie Science & Nature Center Collaborate, Create New “Critters Up Close” Program

Thursday, September 19, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – SEPTEMBER 19, 2013 – ANN ARBOR, MICH. – The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum is teaming up with Leslie Science & Nature Center to offer Critters Up Close, a new monthly program designed to enrich science learning and an appreciation for the diversity of the natural world.  Starting October 12-13, from 1-4 p.m. both days, special animal guests and programming will be offered at the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum. Critters Up Close will take place the second weekend of every month.

“Partnering with the Leslie Science & Nature Center brings together two organizations that have extensive experience delivering science-based programs to K-8 school groups and the general public,” said Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum executive director Mel Drumm.  “This collaboration is an exciting opportunity for the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, the Leslie Science & Nature Center and the community.”

Each month’s Critters Up Close program at the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum will have a special theme or subject matter.  Planned topics include arachnids, snakes, owls, lizards, turtles, frogs and toads, insects, raptors, roaches, salamanders, worms, and rodents. Along with these programs, the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum staff will design hands-on activities and take-home materials to extend the learning experience.

Critters Up Close will also include a special passport program. The passport will be stamped each time a visitor participates in a Critters up Close program at the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum and visits Leslie Science & Nature Center in the same month.  Prizes will be awarded to visitors who have six stamps from both the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum and Leslie Science & Nature Center.

"We're honored to be a part of this program with the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum and to help broaden natural science programming for local families," said Leslie Science & Nature Center executive director Susan Westhoff. "We are thrilled to share our living collections at the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum as well as inviting people to our site to see even more educational animals and explore our extensive hiking trails.”

Critters Up Close programming is included in regular admission to the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, at no additional cost.  Critters Up Close is funded by support from the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation, the Carroll J. Haas Foundation, and the James A. & Faith Knight Foundation.

About the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum

The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum is a regional destination attracting over 250,000 visitors every year. It offers more than 250 interactive exhibits that spark the imagination. The mission of the Museum is to inspire people to discover the wonder of science, technology, engineering, art and math. Visit www.aahom.org or call 734.995.5439 for more information.

About Leslie Science & Nature Center

Leslie Science & Nature Center is a nonprofit organization that provides environmental education and experiences for children, families, and other individuals to honor and perpetuate the legacy of Dr. and Mrs. Eugene Leslie by fostering understanding, appreciation, stewardship, and respect for the natural world. Visit www.lesliesnc.org or call 734.997.1553 for more information.

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