Chicago’s Museum Campus has much to offer to any college student, and now is as good a time as ever to check it out. The Field Museum of Natural History, in particular, presents a fantastic opportunity. Every day in February is Free Admission Day meaning that basic admission is available for free to all Illinois residents with proof of residence. Proof of residency includes an Illinois Student ID with photo meaning even if you’re from out of state or you’re an international student, your Hawk ID will allow you to benefit from this event.
As you enter the museum, you may notice some foliage suspended over the main level in massive planters. These hanging gardens are not only aesthetically pleasing, but they help the museum live up to its “natural” title. The amazing thing about the structures that the plants are in is that they were constructed using 3D printing. One of the four gardens spans 35 feet across making it the world’s largest 3D printed garden. A touch-screen panel on the second level displays a video of the structures being made. The plants are projected to continue to grow all around its framework home and become even more visually stunning.
One worthwhile exhibit is the Abbott Hall of Conservation. It showcases many international conservation projects as well as some taking place right in Illinois. When you step in, the first one shown off is a conservation project taking place in the Andes-Amazon Rainforest. You’re able to read and learn about the scientists’ work in studying the diverse ecosystems living in the region. This exhibit is relatively smaller compared to some of other ones in the museum. Despite this, it still manages to be informational and worth a walk through.
To those who have visited the Field Museum before, you may remember Sue, the massive T-rex fossil whose skull was heavy enough to require its own pedestal away from the rest of its body. You may also remember that last year plans were announced to move Sue’s skeleton to a room within The Griffin Halls of Evolving Planet. Recently, Sue has finally completed the move and is open to viewing and picture-taking yet again. On your way to see Sue again, or maybe to see the gigantic fossil for the first time, take some time to also explore their new home.
Take advantage of the Free Admission Days this month before it’s too late, and keep an eye out for other Free Admission Day dates at all the sites on the museum campus.