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When he opened the museum doors in 1891, Franklin Fairbanks said:

“A collection of birds, animals, shells or whatever it may be, is, after all, but a collection of dead things
unless used as an illustration to help your search for knowledge.”

Those words still ring true for the Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium today as we offer exciting and dynamic programming to our community.  Be sure to check this page often for the latest information on upcoming programs and events. 

If you’d like to have information of future programs delivered to your inbox click here.  For more information, contact Jen D’Agostino at 802.748.2372 or


Stories from Space Storytime

When: First and third Sundays through April 10am – 11am 

Where: Meets in Museum Lecture Hall

Join science educator, Mike Ressler in the Planetarium as he reads stories about space, zooms kids through the solar system and then brings you back to earth for a space-based craft!

Story Times are for ages 0-5 and are free and open to the public.  Funded in part by Building Bright Futures.

125th Anniversary Celebration

When: Friday, March 1, 4:00 - 5:30

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

Join us on March 1st to celebrate 125 years of official weather observation!

On March 1st, 1894, the Fairbanks Museum was officially accepted as an observation site for the US Weather Bureau.  Join us as we celebrate this milestone!  At 4:00 we take our daily weather observations. A reception will follow including a brief presentation by Dr. William Minisinger of the Blue Hills Observatory as he speaks about the 1927 Flood and 1938 Hurricane and the affects they had on Vermont and St. Johnsbury.  Also on hand will be Dr. Charles Orloff, the Executive Director of the Blue Hills Observatory; Dr. Jason Shafer, President of Atmospheric Sciences from Northern Vermont University; Paul Sisson, Science Operations Officer at the National Weather Service in Burlington; and Mark Breen, Fairbanks Museum's Senior Meteorologist.

Come listen to the important role that continuous weather observations play in terms of understanding the changes happening in our climate.  Learn about some of the most historic weather events in our area and be sure to bring your weather related questions!

Free and open to the public.  For more information: Jen D'Agostino 802.748.2372 or


Strawberry DNA in the STEM LAB

When: Mon, February 25, 26, or 27 10am – 12pm

Where: Meet at the Front Desk in the Museum promptly at 10:00

Have you ever wondered what DNA is? All living things, including you, have DNA or deoxyribonucleic acid. Using strawberries, in this one-time 2 hour lab class we will perform a scientific experiment using household materials to extract the DNA from it. The neat thing about strawberry DNA is that you can see it with the naked eye! The program takes place in the new Fairbanks Museum STEM Lab with a maximum of 10 participants.

Members: $10 Non-members: $15

Please RSVP with date you would like to participate to Leila Nordmann:


Take Apart Day

When: Wed, February 27, 10am – 3pm

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

Have you ever wondered what makes things tick? How do the things that you use every day work? Join us on February 27th for Take Apart Day! Have the chance to explore the inner-workings of common household items. It’s all about deconstruction, BUT, can you take on the bigger challenge of reconstructing something exciting and completely new?

Free with museum admission. Open to ages 4 to adult. Children under 10 must be accompanied by an adult.


Chemistry of Beer with John Lenzini of Schilling Beer Company

When: Tue, March 12, March 26, April 9 from 6:30pm – 8:00pm

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

CLASS 1 (March 12):  Overview of brewing process / raw materials: malt and hops
In this first class, a brief summary of the brewing process will be presented. Participants will learn how brewers select malts and hops for particular beers, with a focus placed on how brewers read certificates of analysis and analyze malt characteristics and hop oils when formulating beer recipes. Samples of malts and hops will be available, and beers that highlight particular raw materials will be served.  

CLASS 2 (March 26):  Yeast and fermentation
Overview: This class will cover the selection of yeast for particular beer styles. Yeast derived flavors, fermentation profiles, and yeast handling in breweries will be highlighted. Beers produced with a variety of yeasts will be served.

CLASS 3 (April 9):  Sensory Analysis Basics
Overview: This class will involve the identification of a few common off-flavors in packaged beer. Comparisons of off- and acceptable flavors will be made.

Members: $30 per class or all three classes, prepaid $75; 
Non-members: $35 per class or all three classes, prepaid $90.
*Pre-paid discount ends March 5th, after this the cost of all three classes will be full price.

Only open to participants aged 21+. Legal IDs will be required at the beginning of class.

**This class will be open to 30 people, total.  If more than 30 people RSVP, priority will be given to those who have paid prior to the class.**

Please click on this link to RSVP.
Contact Jen D'Agostino at 802.748.2372 or for more information.

Bee Keeping Class

When: Sat, April 6, 10am – 3pm (lunch break12-1pm)

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

Have you ever thought about keeping honey bees? Then this workshop is for you! The following areas will be covered during the program: history of beekeeping, basic honeybee biology, apiary location, equipment, bee behavior, working in hives, colonies, nucs, packages, swarms, and new colony management. Instructors are members of North Country Beekeepers Association and donate their time and equipment for class. Program materials are a mix of beekeeper's experiences, attended seminars, online-references and a mix of other materials, which have been shared by many beekeepers throughout the years.

$35 a person paid day of the program. All proceeds go directly to supporting the NC Beekeepers Association

Please click on this link to RSVP.

For more information, contact Jen D'Agostino at 802.748.2372 or


Animal Buddies

When: Fri, April 12, 9am – Sat, April 13, 10am

Drop your animal buddies off for a night at the museum! Bring your animal buddies to the front desk on Friday April 12th and leave them in the hands of our professional stuffed animal handlers! Your buddy will spend the night playing hide and seek and going on adventures throughout the museum. Come to the museum Saturday morning at 9 am to look for your buddy, listen to a story read by our Balch Nature Pre-school teacher, Ms. Carolyn, and have breakfast. Family members are welcome to join us!

Program cost is $10 a buddy.

Butterfly Garden Planting

When: Mon, April 15 and 19, 10am – 11am

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

Join us as we plant the seeds for the plants that will feed our butterflies! In June we'll welcome native butterfly species into our Butterfly House. But first, we must prep for their arrival! On April 17 & 19 we'll begin planting our butterflies' favorite foods. We invite you to join us as we dig in the dirt and plant the seeds for our winged guests who will be coming this summer!

Free with paid admission.


The Conservation and Recovery Efforts of Bats in Vermont

When: Wed, April 17, 6:30pm – 8:00pm

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

Learn about bat conservation and recovery efforts being implemented in Vermont and across the continent from state biologist Alyssa Bennett. She will introduce you to the major threats that face Vermont’s nine bat species, including the deadly fungal disease White-nose Syndrome. You will learn what the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department is doing here in Vermont and on the international stage to combat this disease through the use of colorful photos, compelling figures, and collaborative success stories.  Bio:  Alyssa Bennett is the Small Mammals Biologist for the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department, where she works primarily on the conservation and recovery of Vermont’s bats.

Free and open to the public.

Soil Health: Farms and Water Quality in the CT Rivershed

When: Tue, May 14, 2019, 6:30pm – 7:30pm

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

Join us as Laura Johnson from the UVM Extension Agency discusses soil organic matter, what soil health means, and what farms in the Connecticut River Valley are doing to address soil health and water quality. You'll come away with a broader understanding of the subject and how you can apply this knowledge in your own garden. Free and open to the public.


How the Guitar Conquered America with Tim Brookes

When: Tue, May 28, 2019, 6:30pm – 7:30pm

Where: Museum Lecture Hall

When the first guitar reached these shores 425 years ago, it was a small, unimpressive folk instrument. Now, more guitars are sold in America than all other musical instruments combined. How did this unlikely conquest take place?

Tim Brookes attempts to answer that question with demonstrations, displays, and slides. He touches on the rise of technologies and speaks to the guitar’s importance in defining national, ethnic, and regional identity. He also connects the guitar to such utterly unexpected incidents as the importance of the Confederate Steam Ship Shenandoah, Bonnie and Clyde’s life of crime, and the sad demise of Strenuous Lifer, the pig in the Coney Island Zoo.  Bio: A graduate of Pembroke College Oxford, Tim Brookes has been a writer, editor, guitarist, soccer coach, and woodcarver, and is now the director of the Professional Writing Program at Champlain College and founder of the Endangered Alphabets Project. He was an essayist for NPR for twenty years and is the author of sixteen books, including Guitar: An American Life and Endangered Alphabets.

Free and open to the public.  This program is funded in part by The Vermont Humanities Council.

For more information contact Jen D'Agostino at or 802.748.2372


STEM Lab Camp with Fiona Sweeney

When: Mon, June 10, 2019, 8am – 4pm

Where: Meet at the Museum’s Main Desk

This week long camp is for middle and high school students who wish to be introduced to the world of scientific research. Participants will be introduced to topics that are essential to scientific research, such as ethics, lab safety, scientific method, and experimental design. The goal is for students to experience how a research lab operates and learn some of the advanced techniques used in STEM investigations by completing an experiment on C. elegans from start to finish. At the end of the week, each student will give a short presentation about their lab experiment and experience for parents and guest scientists.

Cost and materials: $300

Please contact Leila Nordmann to register: or (802) 748-2372, x115