Saturday, June 30, 2007


New Summer Exhibit Explores “Not-so-Creepy” Crawlies

Scurry on over to the Buffalo Museum of Science (1020 Humboldt Pkwy., Buffalo) to experience Bug Bash, a new family-friendly exhibit that explores the world of “not-so-creepy” crawlies, opening July 6 and running through Sept. 1. Bug Bash offers a colorful, fun environment all about bugs, bug-inspired participatory activities and real-life insects from the museum’s extensive collections.

“I think we all associate bugs with summer,” said Carroll Ann Simon, acting president and CEO, Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences. “The museum’s primary audience in the summer months is children, either with their family, their day camp group, or other youth groups. Bug Bash is designed to appeal to young audiences with a highly visual, fun and fascinating look at the largest group of creatures on our planet.”

Bug Bash visitors will be immersed in an oversized bug habitat as soon as they enter the museum, featuring spiders, ladybugs, ants and grasshoppers.

The exhibit features “Pollination & Navigation,” where guests don antennae and bug glasses, while practicing their weaving, tunneling, crawling and climbing skills. “Bug Builders Inc.” explores bugs that build their own unique homes including wasps, ants, tent caterpillars, trap-door spiders and butterflies. Design a personal bug home design, then see how it stacks up to the real bug experts.

“Web Weaving” challenges visitors to weave their own spider web or add to the giant oversized community web. “Camouflage Collage” allows a visitor to create camouflage to help obscure an insect of choice.

The “Flea Circus” features a carnival-like atmosphere where guests can enter “Insect Olympics” contests to see if they could jump as far or as high as certain insects. There is also a medicine ball challenge to see if guests are as strong as dung beetle.

In addition, the museum’s third floor Connections gallery (for ages eight and up) features “Insectigations,” which includes a scientific look at the circle of life with real bugs feeding off animal carcasses, a 15-foot stream table habitat for bugs that walk on water, as well as a giant ant colony. Younger visitors will enjoy “bug time” activities in Camp Wee Explorers, featuring the popular books Garden Animals, Hey Little Ant, The Grouchy Ladybug, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, and The Very Lonely Firefly.

In addition, a large variety of appealing bug-related merchandise will also be available for purchase in Chauncey’s, the museum’s new retail shop.

“There is no doubt that children are fascinated with bugs,” said Dr. John Grehan, director of science and collections and the museum’s resident entomologist. “Presenting this bundle of exhibits and programs is a way to nurture their curiosity and sustain their interest in biology throughout their lives.”

Museum summer hours through Labor Day are Monday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., closed Sundays. Admission is $7 for adults, $5 for children under 12, with discounts for students and seniors with identification. As always, museum members and children under three are free. For more information on these and other summer activities, call (716) 896-5200.

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