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Zuhl Museum adds kid-friendly features for decade celebration

It?s a blast from the past, sending you on a trip back to the prehistoric times where dinosaurs roamed the earth and plants reached the skies.

Students looking at giant slices of petrified wood on the wall with large petrified wood stumps in the foreground.
Students from Jornada Elementary School look at giant slices of petrified wood as they tour the Zuhl Museum Collection inside NMSU?s Alumni and Visitor?s Center. (NMSU Photo by Darren Phillips)
Giant fossilized dinosaur eggs sitting on a chair
Oviraptor dinosaur 65-70 million year-old eggs appear on display in the Zuhl Museum. The museum is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a day of family-friendly events on Saturday, Oct. 18. (NMSU Photo by Darren Phillips)
Large dinosaur bone leaning up against a wall
A six-and-a-half foot tall dinosaur bone is now displayed in the NMSU geological sciences wing inside Gardiner Hall. The bone is one of more than 20 pieces of the Zuhl Collection displayed at Gardiner. (NMSU Photo)

Decade of the Zuhl Museum, an event celebrating New Mexico State University Zuhl Collection?s tenth anniversary will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, October 18, 775 College Drive, near the northwest entrance of campus.

This free event features activities for both the young and young at heart and is extended to the public.

?We?re having a fun and family focused event with face painting, a dinosaur walk, a photo opportunity in Mesozoic Sea, dinosaur origami, a bean bag toss and more,? said Tiffany Santos, director of the Zuhl Collection. ?The dig pit is new feature we are permanently installing into the museum.?

In conjunction with Earth Science Week (Oct. 12-18), the Zuhl Museum aims to inform guests about the fossil, mineral and petrified wood collection on display year round.

?We?re always called the biggest kept secret on campus,? Santos said. ?We want people to know the Zuhl Museum is here because it?s incredibly unique. We have the finest collection of petrified wood on display in the country.?

The Zuhl Collection began in 2000 and was originally housed in the library. In 2004 the Alumni and Visitors Center and museum were built. The collection is owned and was donated by Herb and Joan Zuhl. In 2007, another gift made possible an extension to the Alumni and Visitors Center, almost doubling the area of the museum. Today more than 1,800 specimens are in the Zuhl Collection with the majority on display in the Zuhl Museum, the Zuhl Library and Gardiner Hall, home of the geological sciences department in the College of Arts and Sciences.

?Zuhl continues to add to his collection, purchasing new pieces often,? Santos said. ?He will hopefully make an appearance at the event.?

The Zuhl Museum is one of five NMSU museums on campus. It is open Monday-Friday 8-5, closed on holidays. Beginning after the celebration, the museum will be open every second Saturday of the month and will feature child focused activities.

No parking permit is required for the Alumni and Visitors Center.

For more information on the event or Zuhl Collection call or visit at http://zuhlmuseum.nmsu.edu/ or 575-646-2708.