Western Science Center

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Riverside County's premiere Natural History museum, Western Science Center, is home to both permanent and special exhibits along with educational programming promoting scientific knowledge. With an extensive collection of Ice Age fossils, as well as archaeological artifacts, the Western Science Center is the perfect place to discover the past and explore the future! Follow us on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/WesternCenter Visit Dr. Alton Dooley's Director's Blog at: http://valleyofthemastodon.wordpress.com/

The museum will be closed to the public on 11/28 for Thanksgiving. We hope everyone has a wonderful holiday!
11/22/2019

The museum will be closed to the public on 11/28 for Thanksgiving. We hope everyone has a wonderful holiday!

Georgia Southern University professor and poet-in-residence of the 2017 Valley of the Mastodons conference Christina Ols...
11/20/2019
The Last Mastodon

Georgia Southern University professor and poet-in-residence of the 2017 Valley of the Mastodons conference Christina Olson has published a new chapbook from Rattle. This collection of poems is based on our museum's collections, as well as Olson's experience working with the paleontologists who attended the VoM conference. This literary marriage of art and science is now available for purchase!

In summer of 2017, Christina Olson was invited to serve as poet-in-residence for apaleontology conference and exhibition (“The Valley of the Mastodons”) at the Western Science Center in Hemet, California.

The museum is now decked out for the holidays! 🌲Join us on December 10 at 5PM for Old Fashioned Holiday, our free family...
11/19/2019

The museum is now decked out for the holidays! 🌲

Join us on December 10 at 5PM for Old Fashioned Holiday, our free family event! Meet Santa, shop for arts & crafts, and enjoy the holiday season at the Inland Empire’s local natural history museum.

Tiny Titan: A New Look at Haplocanthosaurus is now open to public!Thanks to Western University of Health Sciences profes...
11/18/2019
The Snowmass Haplocanthosaurus project is now a museum exhibit

Tiny Titan: A New Look at Haplocanthosaurus is now open to public!

Thanks to Western University of Health Sciences professor Dr. Mathew Wedel for this great write up about his experience working with us to produce this exhibit!

Tiny Titan, a temporary exhibit about the Snowmass Haplocanthosaurus project, opened at the Western Science Center in Hemet, California, last night. How? Why? Read on. Things have been quieter this…

Executive Director Dr. Alton Dooley is ready to teach you how to (re)build a fossil whale! Join us tomorrow at 7PM for D...
11/14/2019

Executive Director Dr. Alton Dooley is ready to teach you how to (re)build a fossil whale! Join us tomorrow at 7PM for Dr. Dooley’s fall lecture, “Reconstructing Buttercup”; only $5 per person and free for members! 🐋#WhaleWednesday

Good morning French Valley Air Show! Max’s Mobile Museum is on the tarmac and ready to go! We’ll be here until 3:30 PM -...
11/09/2019

Good morning French Valley Air Show! Max’s Mobile Museum is on the tarmac and ready to go! We’ll be here until 3:30 PM - fly on by and learn about paleontology in Temecula and beyond! ✈️

Happy #FossilFriday! We’ve joined our friends Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology for the Rancho Cucamonga Public Libr...
11/08/2019

Happy #FossilFriday! We’ve joined our friends Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology for the Rancho Cucamonga Public Library STEAM celebration! Stop by until 5:30 PM to check out our 3D printed fossils and our 3D printer in action!

We like big verts and we cannot lie. 🦕 Tiny Titan: A New Look at Haplocanthosaurus opens next week at the Western Scienc...
11/05/2019

We like big verts and we cannot lie. 🦕 Tiny Titan: A New Look at Haplocanthosaurus opens next week at the Western Science Center on Nov. 16th! Based on the research of Western University of Health Sciences paleontologists, we can’t wait to show you the ways CT scanning and 3D modeling have shed new light on this unique Jurassic sauropod.

Featured in this picture: a #3Dprinted Haplocanthosaurus vertebra!

Pelagornis has touched down SBD Fest! This 5 million year old bird is accompanying the Mobile Museum at this weekend’s a...
11/02/2019

Pelagornis has touched down SBD Fest! This 5 million year old bird is accompanying the Mobile Museum at this weekend’s airshow- stop by our trailer to learn about one of the largest flying birds of all time!

Our staff and volunteers have gone under the (ancient) sea for #Halloween! 🦑 🐠 🏴‍☠️
10/31/2019

Our staff and volunteers have gone under the (ancient) sea for #Halloween! 🦑 🐠 🏴‍☠️

The collections are dark, and cool, and quiet - who knows what the long dead fossils get up to in there when we’re not l...
10/31/2019

The collections are dark, and cool, and quiet - who knows what the long dead fossils get up to in there when we’re not looking? 💀 👻 Happy #Halloween from your local prehistoric beast repository 🎃

Happy #NationalCatDay from Homotherium, aka the scimitar cat! Saber tooth cats were not the only felines roaming prehist...
10/29/2019

Happy #NationalCatDay from Homotherium, aka the scimitar cat! Saber tooth cats were not the only felines roaming prehistoric Southern California. This tooth and dentary are over a million years old and were found in the San Timeteo Formation during the excavation of the Southern California Edison El Casco substation. 🐈

Here's a spooky, Halloween themed #FossilFriday for you! It turns out that mastodons (American mastodons from Florida, a...
10/25/2019
Mastodons and pumpkins

Here's a spooky, Halloween themed #FossilFriday for you! It turns out that mastodons (American mastodons from Florida, at least!) loved them some pumpkins. 🎃

Pumpkins are an interesting fruit. Curcurbita pepo is one of several domesticated species of the genus Curcurbita, vines that are native to the Americas. Curcurbita is a ecologically diverse genus,…

Western Science Center's cover photo
10/22/2019

Western Science Center's cover photo

Sometimes we don't know what kind of fossil we're working with yet - this mammal limb bone collected under permit from J...
10/18/2019
Fossil Friday – Joshua Tree mammal bone

Sometimes we don't know what kind of fossil we're working with yet - this mammal limb bone collected under permit from Joshua Tree National Park could be a camel, but we're still comparing it with other Ice Age camel fossils in our collection. 🐪 #FossilFriday

The Diamond Valley collection housed at WSC is an extremely rich record of Ice Age life in southern California, but it is far from the only Pleistocene site represented in the museum’s collec…

The Western Science Center, in support of those impacted by the #SandalwoodFire, is offering free admission to residents...
10/12/2019

The Western Science Center, in support of those impacted by the #SandalwoodFire, is offering free admission to residents of the evacuation zone (please note that we cannot provide camping space, overnight boarding, or accommodations for non-service animal pets for those affected by the evacuation).

This offer will be open as long as evacuation orders are in place. We are open from 10AM – 5PM Tuesday through Sunday; please contact us with any questions.

Check out this The Poetry Society of South Carolina interview with poet and Georgia Southern University professor Christ...
10/09/2019
Olson Interview | Poetry Society of South Carolina

Check out this The Poetry Society of South Carolina interview with poet and Georgia Southern University professor Christina Olson, who attended the 2017 #ValleyoftheMastodons conference and now is releasing a chapbook of called "The Last Mastodon", partially inspired by her visit to our collections!

Christina Olson joins us this month for both a reading and seminar. The following is a brief conversation we had via email with Christine about her work. We hope you enjoy it. 

Happy #MastodonMonday! This tiny tooth is a 2nd premolar from a #pacificmastodon, collected in 1902 in Shasta County, Ca...
10/08/2019

Happy #MastodonMonday! This tiny tooth is a 2nd premolar from a #pacificmastodon, collected in 1902 in Shasta County, California. The 2nd premolar is the first tooth to erupt in a baby mastodon’s mouth, and fell out when the baby was about 1-2 years old. The heavy wear and worn, rounded roots suggest that this tooth was shed.
This specimen is housed at University of California Museum of Paleontology.

The #ScienceOfFossils is underway! We’re celebrating National Fossil Day with free activities, funded by a grant from So...
10/05/2019

The #ScienceOfFossils is underway! We’re celebrating National Fossil Day with free activities, funded by a grant from Southern California Edison (SCE)! We hope everyone enjoys learning how to be a paleontologist! #ScienceSaturday

Join us tomorrow as we celebrate National Fossil Day at Science Saturday: The Science of Fossils! The fun starts at 10:3...
10/04/2019

Join us tomorrow as we celebrate National Fossil Day at Science Saturday: The Science of Fossils! The fun starts at 10:30 AM.

Activities for Science Saturdays are free! There is an additional fee to enter the museum. Children under the age of 13 must be accompanied by an adult.

Hi everyone! Please be aware that there is NO MSJC lecture tonight; MSJC lectures will resume in the spring semester. Th...
10/03/2019

Hi everyone! Please be aware that there is NO MSJC lecture tonight; MSJC lectures will resume in the spring semester. Thank you!

Thanks to everyone who visited #M3 Max’s Mobile Museum at Europa Village today and learned some local science and paleon...
09/28/2019

Thanks to everyone who visited #M3 Max’s Mobile Museum at Europa Village today and learned some local science and paleontology! Personally we had a great view of our local winery. #BetweenTwoTusks

Our Max Mastodon plush army has arrived at #GSA2019! Stop by booth #702 to bring home your  very own Pacific Mastodon, G...
09/22/2019

Our Max Mastodon plush army has arrived at #GSA2019! Stop by booth #702 to bring home your very own Pacific Mastodon, Geological Society of America attendees!

WSC staff (and Max the Mastodon) stopped by Bigfoot Art Classes yesterday to discuss developing a logo for the Pacific M...
09/20/2019

WSC staff (and Max the Mastodon) stopped by Bigfoot Art Classes yesterday to discuss developing a logo for the Pacific Mastodon! We can't wait to see what these young artists will create - stay tuned!

Join us this weekend at Dino Fest 2019 at Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, where we'll be showing off some ...
09/18/2019

Join us this weekend at Dino Fest 2019 at Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, where we'll be showing off some of the dinosaurs and fossils from our collection! Our educators and volunteers will be available to chat about all things dino - tickets and more info available at http://nhm.org/dinofest

(Art by Brian Engh Art).

Here’s a special delivery for #MastodonMonday: you - yes, YOU - can now purchase your very own Max the Mastodon plush at...
09/16/2019

Here’s a special delivery for #MastodonMonday: you - yes, YOU - can now purchase your very own Max the Mastodon plush at our museum store or at one of our outreach booths this fall! This is the first and only plush available of the Pacific Mastodon. Get yours today! 🐘

It’s #MastodonMonday, so here’s a #PacificMastodon 3rd molar! Discovered in Alameda County in 1939, it now lives at the ...
09/09/2019

It’s #MastodonMonday, so here’s a #PacificMastodon 3rd molar! Discovered in Alameda County in 1939, it now lives at the University of California Museum of Paleontology.

Join us tomorrow at 10:30 AM for Science Saturday: The Science of Superheroes!Activities for Science Saturdays are locat...
09/06/2019

Join us tomorrow at 10:30 AM for Science Saturday: The Science of Superheroes!

Activities for Science Saturdays are located in the Museum Piazza. Children under the age of 13 must be accompanied by an adult. Additional fee to enter the museum.

Science Saturdays are made possible by a grant from Southern California Edison (SCE).

We are now expanding our half off admission offer to all local school districts closed due to the #TenajaFire, including...
09/06/2019
Western Science Center

We are now expanding our half off admission offer to all local school districts closed due to the #TenajaFire, including Menifee Union School District, Romoland School District, Lake Elsinore Unified School District, and Perris Union High School District.

The Western Science Center, in support of those impacted by the #TenajaFire, is offering free admission to residents of the evacuation zone (please note that we cannot provide camping space, overnight boarding, or accommodations for non-service animals pets for those affected by the evacuation).

Also, we will be offering half off all admission tiers to families affected by the Murrieta Valley Unified School District closure.

Both offers are open through the weekend or as long as evacuation orders/school district closures are in place. We are open from 10AM – 5PM; please contact us with any questions.

A new live auction item has arrived at Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea! Bid on a one week stay at Southern C...
09/05/2019

A new live auction item has arrived at Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea! Bid on a one week stay at Southern California Beach Club at Oceanside, California and enjoy all of the fun beach side living has to offer!

Please note that this auction item is only available Sept. 22 - Sept. 29, so clear those calendars! Donated by Mike and Joanne Morello.

Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea will be held on September 14! Contact the museum for more details or to purchase seats. $125/person. All proceeds from the event support the Western Science Center and its programs.

The Western Science Center, in support of those impacted by the #TenajaFire, is offering free admission to residents of ...
09/05/2019
‘Tenaja Fire’ Near Murrieta Grows to 1,400 Acres; Evacuations in Place

The Western Science Center, in support of those impacted by the #TenajaFire, is offering free admission to residents of the evacuation zone (please note that we cannot provide camping space, overnight boarding, or accommodations for non-service animals pets for those affected by the evacuation).

Also, we will be offering half off all admission tiers to families affected by the Murrieta Valley Unified School District closure.

Both offers are open through the weekend or as long as evacuation orders/school district closures are in place. We are open from 10AM – 5PM; please contact us with any questions.

Mandatory evacuation orders remained in place Thursday morning as a fire that broke out near Murrieta a day earlier continued to grow overnight. The fire, dubbed the Tenaja Fire, expanded to 1,400 acres and was just 7 percent contained as of 6:20 a.m., according to an update from the Riverside Count...

We're sharing more of the exclusive auction items that will be available at Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea!...
09/04/2019

We're sharing more of the exclusive auction items that will be available at Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea!

Escape for a romantic weekend in sunny San Diego at the bayside Manchester Grand Hyatt, with dinner at the exclusive Roy’s Restaurant, plus $200 towards your choice of added fun! Will you ride a jet boat, sail on the America’s Cup boat, visit Sea World or the San Diego Zoo, spend the day at the Hyatt Spa, go shopping? The choice is yours! Donated by Eric & Gisela Gosch.

Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea will be held on September 14! Contact the museum for more details or to purchase seats. $125/person. All proceeds from the event support the Western Science Center and its programs.

Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea is almost here, and guests will have the opportunity to snap up exclusive it...
09/03/2019

Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea is almost here, and guests will have the opportunity to snap up exclusive items and getaways during our live auction!

On auction this year: a one week stay at a beautiful Park City, Utah condo! A perfect place for year-round family fun. Whether skiing at any of the local resorts (Canyons/Park City Mountain or Deer Valley) or hiking, zip-lining and mountain biking when the snow’s all gone, beautiful Park City is where your next adventure is waiting to happen! Great restaurants, bars and shopping all year long. Donated by Eric & Gisela Gosch, terms & conditions apply.

Science Under the Stars: Science of the Sea will be held on September 14! Contact the museum for more details or to purchase seats. $125/person. All proceeds from the event support the Western Science Center and its programs.

Are you ready for Life in the Ancient Seas Exhibit Opening? Our deep dive into the world of marine paleontology opens to...
08/30/2019
Go under the ancient sea with new exhibit at Hemet’s Western Science Center

Are you ready for Life in the Ancient Seas Exhibit Opening? Our deep dive into the world of marine paleontology opens to the public tomorrow at 10AM! Thank you to The Press-Enterprise for this sneak preview of our newest exhibit.

The marine paleontology display, which has fossils from tiny trilobites to whales, starts Saturday, Aug. 31, and runs through mid-2020

“Life in Ancient Seas” is almost here! 🌊Cases are being filled, fossils are being labeled, and 2.2 billion years of mari...
08/27/2019

“Life in Ancient Seas” is almost here! 🌊Cases are being filled, fossils are being labeled, and 2.2 billion years of marine paleontology is about to arrive in the #InlandEmpire. The exhibit opens to the public this Saturday, August 31st!

Our staff and volunteers are hard at work building a prehistoric ocean! 🌊 .Life in the Ancient Seas will offer visitors ...
08/26/2019

Our staff and volunteers are hard at work building a prehistoric ocean! 🌊 .

Life in the Ancient Seas will offer visitors the opportunity to walk through the history of marine life on earth. Discover fossils from Southern California and beyond when the exhibit opens to the public this Saturday August 31st!

Are you ready for the Life in the Ancient Seas Exhibit Opening? These desmostylian teeth on loan from our friends at the...
08/23/2019

Are you ready for the Life in the Ancient Seas Exhibit Opening? These desmostylian teeth on loan from our friends at the Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology sure are!

This is a lower molar & 3 deciduous premolars from the strange marine mammal Desmostylus; these teeth will be on view when #AncientSeas opens next week on August 31st. #FossilFriday

It's #TuskTuesday! But this isn't really a tusk - it is a tusk shell! Tusk shells are from the mollusk group Scaphopoda,...
08/20/2019

It's #TuskTuesday! But this isn't really a tusk - it is a tusk shell! Tusk shells are from the mollusk group Scaphopoda, a group distinct from the bivalves, snails, and squid. This particular example is Dentalium carolinense, from the Pliocene Yorktown Formation in Virginia. It will be on display in Life in the Ancient Seas Exhibit Opening on August 31st!

It's #MastodonMonday! This #PacificMastodon 3rd molar lives with our friends at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History!
08/19/2019

It's #MastodonMonday! This #PacificMastodon 3rd molar lives with our friends at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History!

Here’s another #AncientSeas sneak preview from Director Alton Dooley!Having evolved the ability to move around under the...
08/16/2019

Here’s another #AncientSeas sneak preview from Director Alton Dooley!

Having evolved the ability to move around under their own power, a surprising number of animal groups gave up mobility in favor of a sessile existence. This has happened several times among the echinoderms, the phylum that includes starfish and sea urchins. One group of sessile, suspension-feeding echinoderms was the Blastoidea. The calyx shown here was attached to the sea floor by a stalk, and filaments on the calyx captured food. This particular example is Pentremites, from the Carboniferous of Indiana. Blastoids first appeared in the Ordovician, and the last ones went extinct in the giant mass extinction at the end of the Permian.

This specimen will be on display in our upcoming exhibit “Life In The Ancient Seas”, opening August 31.

WSC Curator Dr. Andrew McDonald will be visiting our friends at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History this Saturday! L...
08/15/2019
Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History

WSC Curator Dr. Andrew McDonald will be visiting our friends at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History this Saturday! Learn all about the dinosaurs he's discovered while exploring an amazing natural history museum located in beautiful Santa Barbara. 🦖

Are you—or is someone you love—dinosaur-obsessed? 🦕 We have your Saturday planned. Come meet Western Science Center Curator Andrew McDonald, Ph.D., who led the team that discovered _Invictarx_ and _Dynamoterror_. 🦖 (Read more in the Smithsonian Magazine article linked here.) From 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM, Dr. McDonald will be here for Dino Days: Western Science Center's Dr. Andrew McDonald to share replicas of fascinating fossils from the Late Cretaceous Epoch and answer your questions about what it's really like to study dinosaurs! #thisisajob Our Prehistoric Forest 🌿 exhibit runs through September 9, and this is a great opportunity to experience it with a side of extra paleoexpertise. ⚒

Happy #WhaleWednesday! 🐋 Here’s a #3dprinted cranium of the Oligocene toothed whale Cotylocara macei. Cotylocara is the ...
08/14/2019

Happy #WhaleWednesday! 🐋 Here’s a #3dprinted cranium of the Oligocene toothed whale Cotylocara macei. Cotylocara is the earliest cetacean with clear anatomical evidence that it was capable of echolocation.

This print was produced at Mace Brown Museum of Natural History at the College of Charleston and is based on the holotype specimen in the collections there. It will be displayed in our upcoming exhibit “Life in the Ancient Seas”, opening August 31st! Life in the Ancient Seas Exhibit Opening

Western Science Center's cover photo
08/12/2019

Western Science Center's cover photo

It’s #MastodonMonday! This is Blaze, a Pacific mastodon from Diamond Valley Lake. You can download his 3D model on Sketc...
08/12/2019

It’s #MastodonMonday! This is Blaze, a Pacific mastodon from Diamond Valley Lake. You can download his 3D model on Sketchfab.

Address

2345 Searl Pkwy Bldg 2
Hemet, CA
92543

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 17:00
Thursday 10:00 - 17:00
Friday 10:00 - 17:00
Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 10:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(951) 791-0033

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