If there’s one thing all kids seem to love…it’s DINOSAURS! I’ve been saying for years that Nashville really needs a natural history museum. A place where kids can see fragments of the giant beasts that once walked the Earth. What a pleasant surprise to find out about the Earth Experience Natural History Museum, located just 40 minutes east of Nashville, in Murfreesboro!
Located in a Quiet Warehouse District
This museum is tucked away in a quiet, warehouse district located just off the main road. You might not ever know it’s there (hello…me!) if you hadn’t heard about it from someone else. Despite being in a warehouse, the signage out front made it very easy to find and we had no problem getting there with the GPS.
Since there are no windows peeking into the museum, we didn’t really know what to expect as we walked up. As soon as we walked inside…oh my gosh, you guys! What…a…surprise! We were greeted with a beautiful gift shop and a clean, well organized lobby. The sweet lady working the front counter greeted us as soon as we came in and was super helpful in answering our questions.
We went on a private tour with the director of the museum, Mr. Alan Brown, and were treated to his stories of the fossil digs that he does in Montana each Summer. He then went on to tell us that most of the fossils, and other artifacts displayed throughout the museum he dug up himself on one of his excursions! How cool is that?! Knowing that really spurred my kids to want to ask questions about his experience and the things they were seeing throughout our tour. It was an awesome personal touch that you definitely won’t get at a traditional, larger museum. The biggest surprise of all is located at the end of the tour. You’ll have to read through to find out what it is. 😉
Fossils, Minerals, Gems and More!
In addition to the fossils and other artifacts, there is an entire room dedicated to minerals and gems of all kinds! We were surprised to find that many of them were actually found right here in Tennessee. There was an area set up to see how certain types of rocks respond to black light, which was something I had never seen before. Also in that room you’ll find a really cool hands on interactive that uses a projector and a sand box to show kids how water flows down a hillside during a rainstorm and forms things like rivers and lakes. Kids can move the sand around with their hands and the projector responds in real time. It was AWESOME!
It’s interesting to note, that unlike your typical museum, this one also contains a working Paleontology Lab, which is viewable to guests. Looking in, you’ll be able to see all of the projects currently in process. You’ll see things like fossils being carefully cleaned, molds being made, casts being poured, etc. Very cool stuf