One of the reasons so many locals visit SouthernArizonaGuide.com is our recommended Things To Do With Kids section.
Extreme summer heat increases the difficulty of finding activities for the whole family. This is why we appreciate our great Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum even more in June, July, & August.
Every Saturday night from June through August between 6-10 PM, the Desert Museum has special family-oriented programs that are both educational and entertaining. Each Summer Saturday Night has its own unique theme nighttime activities. See our Events page for featured events.
Here’s just a sample:
- Special desert-oriented photography classes: night; lightening; macro; and astro photography. How to create stunning images with any kind of camera.
- Family Astronomy Fun. Learn about stars, asteroids, planets and gravity with a variety of hands-on activities, including viewing telescopes.
- Native American music & dance performances.
- Lessons about Living In Harmony With The Desert.
- Ocean Oasis: Two Worlds, One Paradise, film produced & directed by Soames Summerhays
- Several programs about nocturnal creatures, such as bats & scorpions
Last Saturday, June 1st, the ASDM kicked off it newest exhibit called Diamonds of the Desert. We all know that our Sonoran Desert is not famous for its diamond gemstones. However, we are well aware that we have another kind of diamond: diamondback rattlesnakes.
So, to celebrate the Desert Museum’s 60th B’day, they have paired a spectacular display of diamond gemstones from Sheffield’s Diamonds with rattlesnakes that have rare genetic color or pattern mutations. These snakes are rarely found in the wild because they don’t live long. Their unique appearance makes them stand out from their environment, thus making them more noticeable to their natural predators and prey.
In addition to the rare-colored snakes from the Southwest, the exhibit will feature the only other type of diamondback rattlesnake found in the world — the Eastern Diamond-backed rattlesnake, the largest species of rattlesnakes in the United States.
This new exhibit it is free with Museum admission.
Visiting the Desert Museum at night is a different experience than during the day. Because the Tucson Mountains block much of the city light-pollution, you can see a lot more stars over the Desert Museum than you can over Tucson.
Also, the nighttime is alive with a cacophony of natural sounds we don’t usually hear during the day.
Another big difference is many animals, such as the wolves, beavers, and all the cats, are most active at night.
Speaking of cats, don’t forget, the Desert Museum has a new, young mountain lion that’s in need of a name. You can get more information about this young cat and the naming contest by clicking HERE.
When you go on a Summer Saturday Night adventure, check the Plan Your Visit board at the Entrance Patio for times and locations of the various programs your family is most interested in.
Also, don’t forget that the Desert Museum has Behind-The-Scenes Tours, which we highly recommend for the whole family. You can find out more about these fascinating tours and save a whole $5 per person if you visit our Desert Museum section on SouthernArizonaGuide.com and click on their display ad.
During Summer Saturday evenings the Desert Museum’s two main restaurants will be open. The Ocotillo Café is one of the best fine dining restaurants in Southern Arizona. Because of its popularity, we recommend you call for reservations: 520-883-5705.
Also open for dinner is the Ironwood Terraces Restaurant, the largest dining venue at the Desert Museum which offers a more casual atmosphere, either inside or outside on one of the many patios that overlook the natural desert landscape and nighttime vistas.
See our page and videos of the Desert Museum here.
For a list of the Best Park and Gardens visit our page.