Thunder-Egg-Stravaganza 2019

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The egg hunt that “rocks” returns once again! Join us at Rice Museum on Saturday, April 20, 2019. Admission is $8 for everyone ages 5 and up, and includes admission to the museum galleries. Advanced online ticket purchase is required.

Your mission: locate 4 eggs of different colors around our property and redeem them for prizes. Our prize table includes 2000+ WHOLE thunder eggs. We’ll have volunteers on site all day to cut your thunder eggs open for FREE so you can be the first to see the surprise inside.

Educational talks on thunder eggs in the Northwest will take place inside the museum at 11:00 AM, and 2:00 PM. Egg hunting is available all day.

All ticket sales are final. No refunds for weather. 

ADVANCED ONLINE TICKET PURCHASE REQUIRED

Due to the overwhelming popularity of this event, we require pre-purchased tickets to enter the museum grounds for this event. Members are admitted free, but must still reserve tickets.

  1. Tickets for pre-sale! Tickets are $8 for ages 5 and up, and ages 4 and under are free. Members are free but must sign up for a member ticket. Reserve your tickets below. Member tickets are available 3/11/19. General admission tickets are available starting 4/1/19 at 9:00am. Consider buying a membership.  Your membership not only supports the museum’s educational programs, it has great benefits like early registration and free admission to events like this one.
  2. Morning and Afternoon Admission.  We are limiting the number of tickets sold and offering two opportunities to attend Thunder-Egg-Stravaganza: a morning and afternoon admission window.  If you purchase an AM ticket, you can get in through the front gate any time between 10:00 AM and 1:00 PM. If you purchase a PM ticket, you can get in through the front gate any time between 1:00 PM and 4:00 PM.  We have plenty of thunder eggs and will not run out.  The event will be the same all day long, regardless of whether you show up at 10:00 or 3:30.
  3. Last admission at 4:00 PM. The grounds will be open until 5:00 PM.

Frequently Asked Questions: 

Can I pay for admission at the gate?
No additional admissions will be sold once this event is sold out. This event is very popular and we recommend online ticket reservation (for members) or purchase (not-yet members) as early as possible.

Do we need to be there at a certain time to hunt the eggs? 
No! To redeem for a prize, you need to find four plastic eggs of certain colors (based on their location on the property, the “egg zones”). That eliminates the “mad dash” of other egg hunts and keeps it fair! You can show up any time in your admission window and we promise there will be eggs hidden.

Can adults participate?
Absolutely! Children of all ages are welcome to participate at the Rice Museum.  Everyone loves a good egg hunt.

Do adults have to pay if they’re not participating?
Yes, your $8 covers your admission to the museum regardless of if you choose to hunt eggs. That price is reduced from our $12 general admission.

If I’m in the AM group and I show up at 12:30, can I stay past 1:00?
Yes. You’re welcome to stay as long as you’d like once you’re admitted.

I’m in the PM group but I showed up at 12:30 to get in line, can I come in?
No. You will not be able to park or enter the grounds until 1 PM so we can minimize traffic congestion.

Can I bring my own thunder eggs from home and have you cut them?
No. Our volunteers are here to cut thunder eggs from this event only. Please ask for a recommendation for local cutters if you have your own thunder eggs to cut.

Do you sell food?
Limited snacks will be available for purchase at our hospitality table, so bring your own lunch or plan to grab it from one of the fabulous nearby restaurants. Keep in mind, we do not allow food or drink inside the museum.

Do we have to pay for parking?
Parking is included with your admission, but it is limited and carpooling is HIGHLY encouraged.

Coming Soon: Thunder-Egg-Stravaganza 2019

It’s back! The egg hunt that “rocks” is Saturday, April 20, 2019.

Your mission: locate 4 plastic eggs of different colors around our property and redeem them for prizes. Our prize table includes 2000+ WHOLE thunder eggs. We’ll have volunteers on site all day to cut your thunder eggs open so you can be the first to see the surprise inside.

Member tickets will be available March 11, 2019. Members are free, but must reserve tickets in advance. Consider joining us on our mission and purchasing a membership. Benefits include early access for TES event tickets, reciprocal admission with other attractions, and unlimited admission to Rice NW Museum for a whole year!

General tickets will be available April 1, 2019 at 9:00 AM.

Admission is $8 for everyone ages 5 and up, and includes admission to the museum galleries. Advanced online ticket purchase is required. There will be a morning and afternoon egg hunting session again this year. The morning session admission is 10:00 am-1:00 pm, afternoon session admission is 1:00 PM- 4:00 pm. Grounds will be open until 5:00 PM.

More information will be available after Mystery Mineral Day on February 23!

New Cases Arrive to Hold Upcoming Spann Exhibit

Noted mineral collectors Jim and Gail Spann of Dallas, Texas, have generously agreed to loan the Museum a selection of about 75 of their finest mineral specimens for one year, starting on March 23, 2019. The loaned minerals were selected from the Spann’s personal collection of more that 15,000 minerals. To properly display the care for and exhibit such an important new collection, the Museum has been working hard behind the scenes.

For example, the Museum recently acquired two new cases to hold the gems and minerals. These cases were built by It’s West Display and Lighting of Golden, Colorado, to the museum’s specification. The cases use state of the art LED lighting that will show off the Spann minerals – each case has more that 50 lights! When the cases arrived in Portland they were moved to our facility thanks to a pair of experienced ‘case wranglers’ from All Service Moving.

The two new cases were securely shipped in wooden “coffins” and strapped to a pallet.

After removal from their shipping containers, the 500 pound cases were moved individually to the Main Gallery in the basement of the Museum. This involved strenuous use of straps, a few raised voices, and considerable care to get down the long flight of stairs, but the professionals handled the move without incident.

The second case makes it safely down the stairs.

Once the cases are completely unwrapped and powered up, Curator Julian Gray will work with Jim and Gail Spann to perform the happy task of planning the layout for the exhibit.

Watch this space…

The international range of the specimens we plan to exhibit is impressive – you’ll see material that originated in Uraguay, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Brazil, and China, to name a few. Mark your calendars – March 23, 2019 through February 2020 – this exhibit is sure to draw a crowd!

Plumbogummite from China (photo courtesy of Gail Copus Spann)

Bring Your Finds to Mystery Mineral Day February 23, 2019

Mark your calendars for the next Mystery Mineral Day, scheduled for Saturday, February 23, 2019 in the Northwest Gallery. This always-anticipated event runs from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm and is included with admission to the museum.

Every year, the Museum organizes a panel of experts in the fields of rock & mineral identification, fossil study, and meteorite analysis. We bring together experts from multiple fields to inspect your “mystery” finds and tell you what you’ve found. Represented organizations include:

  • The North America Research Group (NARG), a prominent local fossil study organization
  • The Cascadia Meteorite Laboratory (CML), the leading Oregon resource for meteorite identification, based at Portland State University
  • Noted mineral collectors on the Museum’s Board of Directors; past experts included Gene Meieran, Scott Akenbrand, and Bruce Carter
  • Staff from the Rice NW Museum of Rocks and Minerals, including Curator Julian Gray

One of the exciting opportunities you can take advantage of is the chance to present potential meteorites to the panel. Most such specimens turn out to be “meteor-wrongs” and end up being slag, parts of old tools, or other man-made objects. But not always. In 1999 Donald Wesson and his wife Debbie discovered a large, interesting rock in a ditch in Oregon’s Morrow County and carried it home. After 10 years of storage, Mr. Wesson was inspired by a television show about meteorites to take the rock to a local county fair. Experts there were intrigued, and eventually, the 40-lb. rock was indeed verified as a meteorite. The Wessons sold their find, and in late 2018, it was acquired permanently by the Rice NW Museum and is now on display here. If you’ve got an old specimen laying around that you’ve always wondered about, bring it in!

Gravels from the Willamette River and the Pacific Ocean beaches are a specialty every year, and our panel excels in identifying agates, jasper, quartz, and petrified wood. Mystery Mineral Day is also a great opportunity to show off any noteworthy discoveries you made recently, to make the curator aware of your finds. In 2018, local collector Mike Kaufman brought in some excellent amethyst and quartz specimens he discovered in Tillamook County along a logging road in Oregon’s Coast Range. A pair of the noteworthy pieces are now on display thanks to Mike’s generous loan to the Museum.

Welcome back to school from Rice NW Museum!

Field Trips:

Field trip registration for the 2018-2019 school year is open! Visit our For Teachers page to book now. Rice Museum field trips adhere to Next Generation Science Standards for elementary students. We take group reservations for up to 120 participants for tours in the mornings while we are closed to the public. Financial aid is available for low income schools thanks to the generosity of our donors. Dates are filling quickly, so book soon to ensure availability! Tour dates are available through July 2019.

New! Small School & Home School Tours:

New this year, we are excited to pilot a Small School & Home School Tour program! It’s fulfills all the same educational benchmarks as our tours for large school groups, but you can purchase individual spaces on the tour for smaller groups. This program is designed with small, nonprofit private schools, Montessori Going Out, and families that home school in mind. Space is limited, so reserve your spot today!

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Rice Museum’s Summer Fest – August 4 & 5, 2018

Our 15th annual Summer Fest 2018 will be at the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals Saturday and Sunday, August 4-5, 2018. The hours are 10 AM – 5 PM. Admission is $6 for everyone ages 5 and up!

Summer Fest 2018 Poster

Geodes and other minerals and rocks for sale at vendor booths. The outdoor festival features a wide variety of rock, mineral, gem, jewelry, and fossil dealers. We will have food for purchase, live music, and plenty of fun family activities.

Rock clubs from around the region will be offering wonderful educational displays, demonstrations, and activities.

Come early and stay the whole day. The entire museum will be open during this event, so you can explore all our displays after browsing vendors’ tents and creating a “pet rock.” Bring a picnic lunch or enjoy the refreshments at the museum.

It’s a perfect event to spend with friends and family. Bring them all!

 

Win a Dream Trip to Tuscany!

Congratulations to our winner, Steve T.!

Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals is offering a chance for a dream trip of a lifetime to Tuscany, Italy.  This vacation is valued at $5600.00.

Up to six people can stay in the Tuscan countryside in a three bedroom Private Villa, right in the heart of Tuscany. Property perfectly nestled among the rolling hills surrounding the ancient Etruscan town of Cortona, the ideal place to spend a getaway in the spirit of nature, beauty, relaxation and wine and food. You’ll be hosted by locals who can assist with all your needs.

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Trip Includes:
– 7 nights in a 3 bedroom private countryside villa
– Welcome with your local assistant and personal introduction to Cortona
– Walking tour of Cortona with a professional guide
– Private wine tasting in traditional enoteca in the town center with professional sommelier
– Pre-arrival and in-house local English speaking concierge and booking services
– All visitor taxes, consumption fees (heating etc)

The winner will be announced at 8:00 PM during at our July 14, 2018 Benefit Dinner & Silent Auction. Your attendance is encouraged, but not required.

These tickets won’t last long since there are only 100 tickets available, so get yours today!


Online ticket sales for the Trip to Tuscany Raffle are now closed. 

 

Restrictions: 

– Valid September 15- May 15.
– Subject to availability when you book (no more than 9 months in advance of
travel). NOT valid Christmas or Easter break.
– Vacation is transferable.
– Must book by May 31, 2019.
– Trip does not include airfare.

Volcano Day is June 2, 2018!

New this year, we are partnering with the USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory to bring you science and family fun at Volcano Day at the Rice Museum.

Volcano Day 2

 

On Saturday, June 2, 2018, CVO scientists will give short talks throughout the day on our Cascades volcanoes and volcano science. Have a question about the volcanoes in your backyard? Wondering what’s going on with the eruption in Hawai’i? Ask the experts!

Hands-on activities for all ages will take place in our galleries and on the lawn. And don’t miss Trash-Cano, the explosive eruption demonstration that will happen after each talk!

Local collector Mike Medvec will also be displaying his extensive collection of memorabilia from the famous 1980 eruption at Mt. St. Helens.

Don’t miss the fun! Event runs 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Included with regular museum admission.

2018 Benefit Dinner and Silent Auction Tickets on sale now!

The Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks & Minerals is hosting a benefit dinner. Please join us July 14, 2018 at 5:00 PM as we honor Mary and the late Dennis Murphy for their contributions and many years of support of the Rice Museum. Visit our event page to purchase tickets.

Dr. Terry C. Wallace, Jr., Director of Los Alamos National Laboratory and president of Los Alamos National Security, LLC, will give a presentation about the creation of gold in the universe through the collision of neutron stars. Other evening highlights will include a silent auction, a special appeal (paddle raise) to support our educational programs, a tribute to the late Rudy Tschernich, and dinner from The Hive Catering Co.

Tickets are $100 per seat. The event will take place at the Glenn & Viola Walters Cultural Arts Center in Hillsboro.

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Margaret & Bob McMillan

William H. & Diana Dameron

 Gail & Jim Spann

Sharleen Rice Harvey & Family

 Bruce Carter

Fine Mineral Show

Cedar House Media

Gene & Roz Meieran

Build My Baby Blanket

The Hive Catering, Co.

Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce

Sponsorship Opportunities are available!
Sponsor a table to list your business on this page.