Register and pay for your programs online, or download a printable
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Mysterious Mushrooms, Saturday, September 16
Celebrate Mansfield Festival, Sunday, September 17
Teale Lecture: A Planet without Glaciers, Thursday, September 21
Hammonassett Festival, Saturday, September 30 and Sunday, October 1

Archaeology Field Workshop – Learning the Basics, Saturday October 7
Teale Lecture: Science and Environment in the White House, Monday, October 9
Connecticut Archaeology Fair, Saturday, October 14
Teale Lecture: Mining the Mountains, Thursday, October 19
Morning Tea with Mr. Darwin: Big Man on Campus, Saturday, October 28

Historic Cedar Hill Cemetery Walk, Saturday, November 4
August First: A West Indian Jubilee in America, Sunday, November 5
Teale Lecture: Thoreau as Activist: Writing to Save the World, Thursday, November 9
Exploring Connecticut’s Towns – South Windsor! Saturday, November 11

Black Bears In Connecticut: When, Where, And How Many? Saturday, December 2
Recent Discoveries from the Office of State Archaeology, Saturday, December 9

Mysterious Mushrooms
Connie Borodenko, Connecticut Valley Mycological Society
Saturday, September 16, 10 am to 11:30 am – Pomfret, CT
Advance registration required: $20 ($15 for Members and Donors)

Discover the startling, colorful, sometimes delicious, and sometimes deadly, world of mushrooms and fungi with mycologist Connie Borodenko. Bring a basket and paper bags for gathering these denizens of the shadows during the first part of the program. Then learn about the fascinating world of fungi as we discuss the findings with our mushroom expert. This hike may be challenging for some and will include hilly areas.

Celebrate Mansfield Festival
Sunday, September 17, 12 noon to 4 pm – Mansfield Town Square, Mansfield, CT

Enjoy Mansfield Downtown Partnership’s 13th Celebrate Mansfield Festival. This year the Museum will join Mansfield businesses, organizations, and school groups featuring art, music, entertainment, food, games, and activities promoting the Storrs area. Come for a very entertaining afternoon, and visit the Museum’s table!

Teale Lecture: Extreme Conservation – A Planet without Glaciers
Dr. Joel Berger, Cox Chair of Conservation Biology; Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology, Colorado State University
Thursday, September 21, 4 pm
Konover Auditorium, Dodd Research Center, UConn, Storrs, CT
No registration required – FREE

The world’s landscapes have amazing diversity: hot and tropical, cold and non-peopled, temperate and increasingly peopled. Some 95% of the world’s humans live below 1000 meters and 99% beyond the Arctic. The clan of snow oxen, a species of goat-antelope ancestry, is reflective of species of the remote and cold, untrammeled and wild zones. Dr. Berger’s talk will offer a sense of the magnificence and challenge confronting species persisting at the extreme edges of the world – from its roof on the Tibetan Plateau to its top in the Asian and American Arctic. Three vignettes will be featured: 1) The importance of periglacial zones to wild species, 2) the relevance and limits of science to actionable conservation, and 3) the emergence of novel predator-prey relationships where sea ice diminishes. It is only when we rethink how to do better by moving beyond modern technology alone and coalescing groundwork with insights from people on the land, that we will improve upon our successes.

Joel Berger’s fascination with biodiversity began in California, a place he was soon to depart. He's written five books including Horn of Darkness and The Better to Eat You With, received life-time achievement awards from the Society of Conservation Biology, American Society of Mammalogists, and is an elected fellow of the American Association for Advancement of Sciences. Although fond of disappearing into Central Asia, this past winter (2016) it was to a remote island in the Russian Arctic, which can be read about in his article published in U.S. News and World Report, "The Unlikely Diplomats – The return of the muskoxen to Alaska marks at least one success for U.S.-Russia relations".

Hammonassett Festival
Saturday, September 30, 10 am to 7 pm and Sunday, October 1, 10 am to 5 pm –
Guilford, CT

Join the Museum and Archaeology Center and the Friends of the Office of State Archaeology (FOSA) at the Hammonassett Festival and explore Connecticut’s vibrant natural and cultural history. The Festival features authentic Native American arts and crafts, music, dance and food, live wildlife shows, museum outreach programs, environmental exhibits, and the ever-popular New England Atlatl Championship. Notable performances will include the popular Native Nations Dance Troupe led by Erin Meeches, the Redhawk Native American Arts Council with performances by Aztec Dancers and Peruvian Scissor Dancers, and Native American flute music performed by Allan Madahbee. Allan Saunders, a member of the Mohegan Tribe, will lead an opening blessing and smudging ceremony each day.

The 2017 Hammonassett Festival will take place at the Guilford Fairgrounds, 11 Lovers Lane, Guilford, CT due to planned construction at Hammonassett State Park. For additional information visit

Archaeology Field Workshop – Learning the Basics
Mandy Ranslow, Professional Archaeologist, Friends of the Office of State Archaeology
Saturday October 7, 9 am to 11:30 am – UConn, Storrs, CT
Advance registration required: $20 ($15 for Members and Donors)

What happens at an archaeological dig? Learn about the science, field techniques, tools, and ethical aspects of archaeology from professional archaeologist Mandy Ranslow. Participants will be part of a real archaeological field crew, doing hands-on fieldwork at an ongoing historic house excavation at UConn. Findings at the site add important information to our understanding of Connecticut’s rich historic past.

Special UConn Center of Biological Risk and Teale Lecture: Science and Environment
in the White House: What Obama Did. What Trump Is Doing. What We Can Do

Dr. John P. Holdren, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
Monday, October 9, 4 pm – Student Union Theater, UConn, Storrs, CT

From January 2009 to January 2017, Dr. Holdren was President Obama's Science Advisor and the Senate confirmed Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), becoming the longest-serving Science Advisor to the President in the history of the position. His responsibilities in that role included advising the President on all Science and Technology issues bearing on the President’s agenda including economic competitiveness and job creation, biomedicine and public health, energy and climate change, the oceans and the Arctic, the Nation's space program, and national and homeland security. He also oversaw interagency science and technology programs, developing initiatives in STEM education, advancing scientific integrity and openness in government, and representing the U.S. government in interactions with the U.S. and global science and engineering communities.

Dr. Holdren is currently the Teresa and John Heinz Professor of Environmental Policy at the Kennedy School of Government; Co-Director of the Program on Science, Technology, and Public Policy in the Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs; and Professor of Environmental Science and Policy in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Harvard University. He is also Senior Advisor to the Director at the Woods Hole Research Center.

Connecticut Archaeology Fair
Saturday, October 14, 10 am to 4 pm
Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center – Mashantucket, CT

The Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center hosts the 2017 Connecticut Archaeology Fair. Learn about the many archaeological investigations going on around the state and internationally. Local archaeological societies, historical societies, and universities will have displays highlighting past and current excavations and research with opportunities to see and touch real artifacts! Lectures and kid-friendly activities will take place throughout the day. Have questions about archaeology? There will be archaeologists on hand to provide answers. Whether you have a passing interest in archaeology or you want to find out how to become more involved, there will be something for everyone.

Teale Lecture: Mining the Mountains – The Environmental Legacies
of Coal Mining in Appalachia

Dr. Emily Bernhardt, Department of Biology, Duke University
Thursday, October 19, 4 pm
Konover Auditorium, Dodd Research Center, UConn, Storrs, CT
No registration required – FREE

Mountaintop removal coal mining is the dominant form of land cover change in the Central Appalachian Mountains, and has been an important source of electrical power for much of the eastern United States. More than 10% of the forests within this ecoregion have been converted to active, reclaimed or abandoned surface mines. Research over the last ten years by Dr. Bernhardt and colleagues, has been aimed at documenting the spatial extent and temporal longevity of mountaintop mining impacts on the shape of Appalachian watersheds and the flows, chemistry and biodiversity of Appalachian rivers. In this talk, Dr. Bernhardt will describe this long-term effort to quantify the cumulative environmental impacts of this particularly destructive form of coal mining.

Dr. Emily Bernhardt is a professor in Duke University's department of biology. She has a Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology from Cornell University. Her research on watersheds, rivers and wetlands has regularly led her to questions about the impacts of acid rain, of mountaintop removal coal mining and of coal combustion pollution. She currently serves as the president of the Society for Freshwater Science, an international scientific society devoted to promoting the study of surface waters.

Morning Tea with Mr. Darwin: Big Man on Campus
Saturday, October 28, 10 am – Biology/Physics Building, Room 130, UConn, Storrs, CT
No registration required – FREE
Adults and children ages 10 and above. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Charles Darwin graduated from the University of Cambridge in 1831, tenth in the list of 178 of those obtaining an ordinary degree. He was not a stellar student and later commented that “my time was sadly wasted there.” Along with a failed stint in a medical school education at the University of Edinburgh and an underwhelming performance at boarding school, it was clear that formal education was not his forte. As he said of his early education, “The school as a means of education to me was simply a blank.” How did such a lackluster student turn out to be the most influential scientist of his era? How did he manage to create for himself a path to a successful career as a scientist? How did schools and universities in his time compare to those today? What can we learn from his experience about how to navigate today’s difficult career environment? Find out as Mr. Darwin himself tells stories of his school days, from his childhood until his big break, a trip around the world on the HMS Beagle. Did that life-changing opportunity fall into his lap, or did he help to create the opportunity through his ability to network and impress influential people? Join us for this exploration of Darwin’s world. Mr. Darwin will be portrayed by professor Kenneth Noll of UConn’s Department of Molecular and Cell Biology.

Historic Cedar Hill Cemetery Walk
Beverly Lucas, Director, Cedar Hill Cemetery Foundation
Saturday, November 4, 10 am to 11:30 am Hartford, CT
Advance registration required: $20 ($15 for Members and Donors)
Adults and children ages 8 and above. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

In the summer of 1863, Hartford citizens sought to build a new burial ground, one practical as well as in tune with the aesthetic ideals of Victorian-era cemeteries. A group of prominent Hartford citizens met to discuss establishing a new cemetery, including landscaping pioneer Jacob Weidenmann, who had designed Hartford’s Bushnell Park. A location was chosen and Cedar Hill Cemetery was built as an American "rural" cemetery—an enchanting landscape of woodlands, fields, and ponds, speckled with sculptures and monuments designed by prominent artists and notable architects. Over time, Cedar Hill Cemetery became the final resting place to some of Connecticut’s best-known and celebrated citizens, including Katherine Hepburn, J.P. Morgan, and Samuel Colt to name a few.

Join Beverly Lucas, Director of the Cedar Hill Cemetery Foundation, and learn about Cedar Hill's remarkable history and landscape as well as its notable trees and residents.

August First: A West Indian Jubilee in America 
Dr. Dexter J. Gabriel, Department of History, UConn
Sunday, November 5, 1 pm – Biology/Physics Building, Room 130, UConn, Storrs, CT
No registration required – FREE
Adults and children ages 8 and above. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

On August 1, 1834, the British Abolition Act freed by proclamation 800,000 slaves in the West Indies. In the coming decades, August First—at times called West India Day—became one of the largest abolitionist celebrations in America. Black and white abolitionists throughout the Northern United States—from New England to the Midwest—commemorated the day as a triumph against slavery both at home and abroad, arguing that the success of freedom in the British West Indies foretold the success of freedom in America. 

Teale Lecture: Thoreau as Activist: Writing to Save the World
Jeffrey S. Cramer, Editor of Walden: A Fully-Annotated Edition and Curator of Collections, Walden Woods Project’s Thoreau Institute Library, Lincoln, MA
Thursday, November 9, 4 pm
Konover Auditorium, Dodd Research Center, UConn, Storrs, CT
No registration required – FREE

Henry David Thoreau is recognized as the Father of the American Environmental Movement but it is more his words than his actions that have given him this title. It was through his role as a writer that he hoped to save the world. As he wrote to a friend, “Not that I do not stand on all that I have written—but what am I to the truth I feebly utter!” Thoreau scholar Jeffrey S. Cramer explores Thoreau, the man, with the Thoreauvian truths he uttered, and how those truths helped create the modern environmental movement.

Jeffrey S. Cramer is the editor of Walden: A Fully Annotated Edition, a winner of a 2004 NOBA (National Outdoor Book Award) and a co-winner of the Boston Authors Club's 2005 Julia Ward Howe Special Award. Other works include I to Myself: An Annotated Selection from the Journal of Henry D. Thoreau, The Maine Woods: A Fully Annotated Edition, and The Portable Thoreau. Essays by Henry D. Thoreau: A Fully Annotated Edition was published in 2013. His The Portable Emerson was published 2014.

Special Series: Exploring Connecticut’s Towns – South Windsor!
Khalil Quotap, Museum Educator, Wood Memorial Library and Museum
Saturday, November 11, 10 am to 11:30 – South Windsor, CT
Advance registration required: $20 ($15 for Museum Members and Donors)
Adults and children ages 8 and above. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

The natural and cultural history of Connecticut, in each of its 169 towns, has a unique story to tell. From the indigenous peoples arriving after the glaciers receded and the European explorers and settlers establishing colonies in the “New World,” to the innovators of the industrial revolution leading to the present day, Connecticut is steeped in history. Join us as we explore Connecticut’s towns and learn about the people and places that have shaped and continue to shape the Constitution State.

Once the territory of the indigenous Podunk people, the area of what would become South Windsor was utilized by European settlers from Windsor for grazing and farming. Over time a bustling new community would form in this area, known for its agriculture, tobacco, and shipbuilding. This area officially became East Windsor in 1768, and then the South Windsor area was incorporated as its own town in 1845.

The tour will begin at the Wood Memorial Library and Museum, providing historic context of South Windsor’s Old Main Street. Then we will explore the north end of Main Street for a walking tour of the town’s East Windsor Hill area, highlighting South Windsor’s historic buildings and town lore.

Black Bears In Connecticut: When, Where, And How Many?
Dr. Tracy Rittenhouse, Department of Natural Resources and the Environment, UConn
Saturday, December 2, 1 pm – Biology/Physics Building, Room 130, UConn, Storrs, CT
No registration required – FREE
Adults and children ages 8 and above. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Black bears (Ursus americanus) have become an unmistakable presence in Connecticut. As their population has grown, these adaptable omnivores have expanded their range to include both rural and suburban areas of the state, bringing them into close proximity with people. Black bears' increasingly conspicuous presence has raised many questions about their population. Dr. Rittenhouse studies where wild animals live and how they travel through habitats. She will talk about her a 4-year research project studying Connecticut’s black bear population.

Uncovering Connecticut’s Past: Recent Discoveries from the
Office of State Archaeology

Dr. Brian Jones, State Archaeologist, Museum of Natural History, UConn
Saturday, December 9, 3 pm – Biology/Physics Building, Room 130, UConn, Storrs, CT
At ongoing archaeological digs the past three summers, archaeologists unearthed rich data about Connecticut’s early colonial past. Join Dr. Brian Jones, Connecticut’s State Archaeologist who led these excavations, and discover what these recent archaeological explorations in Windsor, Glastonbury, and Columbia tell us about Connecticut’s earliest European settlers.

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