New Permanent Exhibit Features Native Butterflies in Their Natural Habitat
COLUMBIA, SC – April 6, 2009 – Thousands of butterflies are taking flight at EdVenture Children’s Museum this spring. EdVenture’s newest attraction, Blooming Butterflies, an outdoor nature exhibit featuring hundreds of butterflies flying amongst native green foliage and flowers, will open in late spring. The innovative butterfly laboratory draws on the insect’s mystique to stimulate interest in science curriculum by providing a year-round educational resource, with live species on the premises during spring, summer and early fall each year. EdVenture has targeted Mother’s Day weekend – May 9 – as the opening date of the new exhibit.
Specifically designed for children, Blooming Butterflies provides hands-on scientific exploration of lifecycles, genetic diversity and environmental adaptation of butterflies. The outdoor learning lab will feature 10-15 different species of butterflies indigenous to the Southeast as well as a variety of native and subtropical vegetation. Magnifying instruments and informational signs throughout garden walkways allow children to examine nature up-close. A garden shed provides a viewing window where chrysalises can be seen during various developmental stages. During off-season (November – March) the exhibit will focus on life cycle education and habitat regeneration.
The only one of its kind within more than 90 miles, the Blooming Butterflies mesh-enclosed outdoor pavilion creates a garden oasis within an urban setting, enabling museum-goers to view butterflies in a unique and completely natural environment.
Visitors can expect to be surrounded by hundreds of individual butterflies indigenous to the Southeast, says EdVenture President and CEO Catherine Wilson Horne. We have used the best of local and national talent to create ‘Blooming Butterflies.’ It is designed to educate both children and adults about butterfly interaction with the natural environment and life cycle development. From children to gardeners to nature enthusiasts, there is something for everyone to learn.
EdVenture is investing in education for our community. We also see ‘Blooming Butterflies’ as a method of encouraging tourism, Horne says.
Blooming Butterflies also will appeal to nature enthusiasts who can learn about the best types of plants to use in their yards to attract butterflies.
There is a list of individual and corporate sponsors who made Blooming Butterflies possible, the largest of which includes the City of Forest Acres, Carolina First Bank through The South Financial Group Foundation, Enviro Ag-Science, Inc., and EdVenture’s Discovery Council.
Admission to Blooming Butterflies is free to EdVenture members and only $3 for non-members with standard museum admission. Advance tickets can be purchased online starting April 15. For more information about the ‘Blooming Butterflies’ exhibit or EdVenture Children’s Museum, visit www.edventure.org or call (803) 779-3100. The mission of EdVenture Children’s Museum is to inspire children to experience the joy of learning.