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December 2015 Highlights

November 18, 2015

Filed under Changing Exhibits, Events, Exhibits, Noon Year's Eve, Pennsylvania Icons, Planetarium, Star Stories of the Native Americans

The State Museum of Pennsylvania’s program schedule for December 2015:

Pennsylvania Icons: This new exhibit tells the story of our commonwealth, its people and the role they played in shaping the nation. Visitors will see artifacts related to Pennsylvania’s founder, William Penn, as well as objects from Pennsylvania’s lumber, iron, steel, coal and oil industries. Pennsylvania Icons includes an array of art work from Pennsylvania artists ranging from Charles Willson Peale to Violet Oakley to Andy Warhol, plus examples of iconic Pennsylvania products from Hershey Kisses to Martin Guitar to Mack Trucks.

Pennsylvania Modern: In recognition of the 50th anniversary of The State Museum and Archives Complex, The State Museum presents The Pennsylvania Modern: A Juried Photography Exhibition of Midcentury Modern Architecture. This photography exhibit honors iconic modern architecture throughout the commonwealth and documents this important architecture which is often “hidden in plain sight.” Photographers focused on both the details and the overall views of residences, schools, commercial structures, religious buildings, among others. In addition, buildings designed by several world-famous architects such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra and Louis Kahn were captured by photographers for the show.

The Pennsylvania Turnpike: America’s First Superhighway: The first in a series of modular upgrades to the museum’s popular second floor gallery, this new exhibit highlights the Turnpike’s contribution to the ongoing quest to improve the state’s transportation infrastructure. By tunneling through the mountains rather than routing over or around them, and maintaining uniform design and construction standards across its entire length, the original 160-mile section of roadway cut travel time between Harrisburg and Pittsburgh by nearly half.

What’s Inside?: The Pennsylvania State Archives has unveiled its What’s Inside? Celebrating 50 Years in the State Archives Tower exhibit located in the History Alcove on the Second Floor of The State Museum. Important documents displayed include: Pennsylvania’s Gradual Abolition Act of 1780, an Indian Deed from Tamanend to William Penn from 1683 and an original 1880 Federal Census book. Topics include: Famous Pennsylvanians, Pennsylvania’s Story, Your Story, Famous Documents, Documents that Protect You and Protecting Records in the State Archives.

Noon Year’s Eve: Bring the children and join the museum staff in ringing in the New Year from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM on Wednesday, Dec. 30. This year, we will be celebrating the New Year with the Animals of Winter. Take in a seasonal planetarium show, make winter crafts, snack, dance, and enjoy story time. ZooAmerica will be joining us with some of their winter animals. The museum’s famous firefly and balloon drop will be in Memorial Hall at 12:00 PM. This family-friendly event is free with museum admission, and no reservations are required.

The Planetarium at The State Museum of Pennsylvania: The planetarium is offering two shows for the month of December:

Star Stories of the Native Americans (Grade 2 and up):
This traditional show explores the night sky legends of the Native Americans. Discover how these tales helped to develop an understanding of the night sky and its importance to the Native American people. Take an up close view of the modern astronomy behind the legends including the cardinal directions, circumpolar motion, Pleiades and the seasons.

December 4 through December 12
Friday – 11:00 AM and 2:00 PM
Saturday – 11:00 AM, 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM and 2:00 PM

Season of Light (All Ages)
This traditionally styled holiday show takes a look at astronomy and holiday traditions. Explore the reason humans are so fascinated with lighting up our lives during the holiday season. Although it is the coldest and darkest of seasons, this time of year holds some of the warmest and brightest celebrations of the year. Trace the history and development of many of the world’s most endearing holiday customs, all of which involve lighting up the winter season, from the burning Yule log, sparkling Christmas tree lights, candles in windows, lighting luminarias, to the traditional ritual of the Hanukkah Menorah and the Star of Bethlehem.

December 18 through December 31
Friday December 18 – 2:00 PM
Saturday December 19 – 11:00 AM, 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM and 2:00 PM
Saturday December 26 – 11:00AM, 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM and 2:00 PM
Wednesday December 30 – 10:00 AM, 11:00 AM, 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM, and 2:00 PM
Thursday December 31 – 11:00 AM and 2:00 PM

Planetarium shows are $3 per person in addition to general admission. Planetarium admission is free to members of the State Museum Affiliate and the Pennsylvania Heritage Foundation.

Holiday Closures: The State Museum will be closed Friday, December 25, 2015 and Friday, January 1, 2016.

MEDIA CONTACT: Howard Pollman, 717-705-8639