CIS Logo White Small

October 2011
front view cis
In This Issue
Members' Night Preview
Life on Earth!
Acheson Planetarium
Trick or Treat! It's Science!
67th Annual Greater Detroit Mineral Show
Birthday Parties
MASCO Corporation Foundation
CIS Membership
Become a Member

Annual Fund

Social Media Links
Find us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterYoutube Logoflickr
Members' Night Preview!

Wed., Oct. 12, 5:30-8:00 pm


Join us for a preview of Life on Earth featuring Explore Evolution, and enjoy family-friendly lectures, or get an autographed copy of the new book Colors of Me, during Members' Night Preview. Arrive early! The first 250 attendees will receive tickets to experience Cranbrook's new Acheson Planetarium.


Fall is in the air at the Institute of Science. Outside, flocks of migrating geese stop to rest during their long trek south, and the leaves have begun to change to create a tapestry-like backdrop for the Institute.  


Inside, even more change is occurring!


October 14 marks the opening of a new Institute-produced exhibition, and a new beginning in space science studies when Life on Earth featuring Explore Evolution, and the Acheson Planetarium open to the public.


Drawing largely from Cranbrook's own collections, Life on Earth illustrates the beauty and importance of the diverse forms of life on our planet. From the giant shells of tree-dwelling snails to the ephemeral beauty of butterflies, this exhibition explores the way living things have changed, and examines what the future might hold for species living today. Explore Evolution looks at seven different scientific studies that have helped us better understand how living things change over time.


Exciting change in astronomy occur when the new Acheson Planetarium opens following extensive upgrades. New lighting and technological changes will offer an experience that is available nowhere else. These changes are the first of many that will ultimately extend to Cranbrook's observatory.


Lots of change in October doesn't mean we've abandoned tradition. One of the Institute's most popular annual events, Halloween Science, takes place October 29. Register today!


Please note closures due to special events this month at Cranbrook. We are closed to the public on October 28 for a partner event with PBS, and until 5pm on October 29 until the start of Halloween Science.


We apologize for any inconvenience but look forward to seeing you at the Institute soon.


Go Science!


Life on Earth! featuring Explore Evolution Reveals the Wonders of our Planet

life on earth

Cranbrook Institute of Science opens its collections to reveal the stunning variety of life forms on our planet when Life on Earth! featuring Explore Evolution opens to the public on Friday, October 14. Specimens from the Institute's collections, the Smithsonian Institution, and other sources, represent all major groups of plants and animals to illustrate the astounding diversity of life on Earth and why maintaining it is important to humanity. As a complement to Life on Earth!, Explore Evolution examines seven exciting research projects that have made major contributions to our understanding of evolution, including work related to the rapid evolution of HIV, a look at fungus-growing ants and their coevolving partners, and research focusing on the fossils of walking whales. Junior scientists will be able to follow Charles Darwin's scientific journey in a specially-designed play area which features activities and games related to the exhibitions set beside a facsimile of Darwin's ship HMS Beagle. Coral Reef tanks as part of the exhibition and live animal shows from the Bat Zone each Saturday offer a living glimpse of the animals that currently share our world. Life on Earth! featuring Explore Evolution is free with admission.


Experience Space Like Never Before in the New Acheson Planetarium

acheson logo

The planetarium enters a new era of space study at Cranbrook Institute of Science when it re-opens to the public on Friday, October 14. Since closing for upgrades on Labor Day, new lighting, sound system, and technology have been installed to deliver the most intense planetarium experience in southeast Michigan. The upgrades, courtesy of the Michael and Adele Acheson family, will offer visitors a 360 degree aural experience that delivers images that are three times brighter, crisper and more color saturated than before. New fall programs include Natural Selection, a look at the research of Charles Darwin and later in the fall, Wild Ocean, a giant screen film about man and nature that captures one of the world's greatest spectacles. To preview program trailers, click here


Trick or Treat! It's Science!    

halloween science

The Institute's most popular educational experience of the season returns with Halloween Science on October 29 at 2-4pm and 6-8pm. No tricks, just lots of treats and science. Adults and kids should don their costumes and prepare for an experience that includes zombies, cockroach races, medieval-style warfare, and ScreamPark360, a haunted roller coaster in space. Dr. Kelp returns with his latest research and Institute Scientists will oversee science demo stations such as liquid nitro, dry ice, hair-raising Van de Graff and glowing rocks; offer Make and Take activities; challenge junior ghouls with a scavenger hunt and much more! Throughout each event, visitors can see the Bat Zone's vampire bats or explore the wonders of our planet in Life on Earth! featuring Explore Evolution. Outside, the Institute's three-ton trebuchet, a modern version of a medieval siege weapon, will hurl objects into the air. Halloween Science tickets are $13 per child and $2 per adult for Members, and $16 per child and $5 per adult for the general public. There is an additional $3 per ticket after close of pre-registration at 5pm Wed., Oct. 26. Pre-registration is strongly encouraged for this very popular event and only pre-registered guests are guaranteed a goodie bag. Register online or by calling 248 645.3210.


Cranbrook and Detroit Rock at the 67th Annual Greater Detroit Mineral Show
Cranbrook goes on the road with four cases of its famous minerals during the 2011 Greater Detroit Gem, Mineral, Fossil & Jewelry Show at the Macomb Sports & Expo Center October 14-16. Hosted by the Michigan Mineralogical Society, the show is the largest of its kind in the Midwest. Institute Geologist John Zawiskie will share some of his favorites from Cranbrook's collections--including specimens not normally on view--during the show. More than sixty dealers, museum and university collections exhibitions, lectures, free mineral identification, a silent auction, and more, make this a perfect fall weekend outing. The Macomb Sports & Expo Center is located in Warren on Hayes Road between 11 and 12 Mile. Tickets are $3-$12. Every ticket purchase includes a free pass to visit Cranbrook Institute of Science. More information at


Party like it's 250,000,000 BCE! 

Party DinoPlanning a birthday party? The Institute of Science offers a unique setting for a birthday party with and ready-made educational fun built in! We have a limited number of spaces for up to twenty children available Sat. and Sun. throughout the year. Each birthday party package includes private use of one of the Institute's Science Labs for up to two hours, access to museum exhibits and any free programs occurring the day of the party and a special Institute of Science gift for the birthday child.  To review party details, check out our website or call 248 645.3210.
MASCO Corporation Foundation First Fridays are FREE!


Courtesy of the MASCO Corporation Foundation, admission to Cranbrook Institute of Science is FREE after 5pm the first Friday of every month through June 1, 2012.

About Us
More than 200,000 visitors flock to Cranbrook Institute of Science each year, making it one of the region's best-known museums of natural history.

Founded in 1904 by Detroit philanthropists George and Ellen Booth, Cranbrook is an internationally renowned center for art, education and science located in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. Cranbrook Institute of Science is an integral part of that community, having served area schoolchildren and families since its creation in 1930.