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Events & Programs

See all upcoming events in Explore It! 

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Exhibit Openings

 
 

Family Programs

Hunting for Treasures in the Great Hall
Available Tuesday - Sunday during open hours

museoGame
Ever seen a gold nugget, a plutonium core, or an ox yoke? Keen-eyed young visitors are encouraged to pick up a treasure hunter's challenge at the information desk and explore the Great Hall's not-so-hidden treasures of Washington pictured there. A fun, self-directed activity for everyone. 
 

MUSEO - A Gallery Game for the Whole Family
Available Wednesday - Sunday during open hours.

Designed for four to eight players, MUSEO is a Bingo-style game of discovery in the Great Hall. Ask for a packet at the admissions desk and let the sleuthing begin!

 

 

 

Pawesome Family Fun at the Museum!Semper Fido photo

Wednesday, July 8
History Museum
Included with Museum Admission
Free to WSHS Members
 
 
11am: "Dogs in Service"
Come meet a variety of service canines -- inlcuding a police K-9 unit, certified therapy dogs, and a Prison Pet Partnership canine -- and get the inside scoop on how these dogs are trained and how they serve your community.
 
1pm: "Semper Fido: The Story of Two War Dogs" with Kirby Larson. 
Newbery Honor children's author Kirby Larson talks about the inspiration for her two books featuring military dogs, "Nubs: The True Story of a Mutt, a Marine, and a Miracle" and "Duke," as well as the research involved in bringing these stories to page for young readers. Visitors will also get a glimpse of the War Dog Memorial in Guam, a place Larson visited while doing research for her books. Bring your copies of Ms. Larson's books for a book signing and a Q&A.
 
 
 

Family Camps

 

Gold Rush Stampede!Gold rush camp photo

11am - 12:30pm
Wednesday, July 22
History Museum
Included in Museum Admission
Free to WSHS Members
 
There's gold in them hills! Thousands of people went hunting for gold in Alaska, but Seattle was their first stop. Hunt for hidden treasure and the real story behind the Klondike Gold Rush. All ages welcome.
 
 
 
 

Pioneers!Pioneer camp

11am - 12:30pm
Wednesday, July 29
History Museum
Included in Museum Admission
Free to WSHS Members
 
Grasshopper plagues, sickness, and pickled pioneers were all part of the drama and danger of traveling the Oregon Trail. How did settlers survive the journey west? Discover the pioneer secrets of survival throughout the msueum galleries. All ages welcome. 


 For more information, contact Dave Beals at 253-798-5879 or dave.beals@wshs.wa.gov.
 

 

Exhibit Programs

 
 

Women of CourageWomen of courage photo

11am
Saturday, August 22
History Museum 
Included in Museum Admission
Free to WSHS Members 
 
Hear stories of women who went above and beyond the call in times of war as military historian Alice Miller showcases her extensive collection of uniforms and artifacts and explores the history of women who served in a variety of roles - intelligence, aviation, nursing, and more - to help the wartime effort. 
 
 
 

Music of the Civil War Civil War music photo

1pm
Saturday, August 22
History Museum
Included in Museum Admission
Free to WSHS Members 
 
Come enjoy popular songs from the Civil War era performed in period attire by musicians and reenactors Kevin Saville and Andy House-Higgens. 
 
 

Washington in WWIIWA in WWII

1pm
Saturday, September 5
History Museum
Included in Museum Admission
Free to WSHS Members 
 
Military historian Peter Lahmann displays his collection of WWII equipment and uniforms, and relates the artifacts to personal accounts of the war from members of each branch of the armed forces. He will give a post-presentation gallery tour of the exhibit The American Soldier: A Photographic Tribute, and explain the context and history of some of the exhibit's striking photographs. 
 
 For more information, contact Dave Beals at 253-798-5879 or dave.beals@wshs.wa.gov.
 

Gallery Talks (First Friday of Every Month at 3pm)

 

Gallery Talks are your opportunity to meet exhibit curators and learn little-known information about our exhibits or get a behind-the-scenes perspective.


These programs are included with admission to the History Museum. Free to WSHS Members.

 

 

  For more information, contact Dave Beals at 253-798-5879 or dave.beals@wshs.wa.gov.
 
 

History Speaks (Last Tuesday of Every month at 12pm)

 

June 30: "The Rich and Varied Legacy of William O. Douglas" with Tom R. Hulst. An examination of the impact of William O. Douglas's legacy on the ideas of privacy, pilgrimage, and place.

July 28: "Returning Home: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Native American Veterans" with Greg Urquhart and Matthew Hale. Impactful discussion of extensive research and development of alternative treatments to address PTSD among Native American veterans.

August 25: "World War II and the Prelude to the Pacific Theater" with Lee Corbin. Hear the story of Tacoma's Robert M. Short, the first American pilot shot down in combat in the Pacific Theater of WWII while flying an armed test plane to China in 1932. 

September 29: "Northwest-Born, Adventure-Raised: The Story of Eddie Bauer" with Colin Berg. Eddie Bauer
Learn how one man's passion for the outdoors became an international brand's identity, how outdoor adventure has fueled decades of product innovation at Eddie Bauer, and how the first down jacket patented in America set the stage for polar exploration, mountaineering expeditions, and archaeological discoveries. Colin Berg, company historian for Eddie Bauer, will explain all this and more with artifacts and photos from the company's collection.


These programs are included with admission to the History Museum. Free to WSHS Members.

 

 For more information, contact Dave Beals at 253-798-5879 or dave.beals@wshs.wa.gov.

 


 

Special Programs & Events 

 

IN THE SPIRIT Contemporary Native Arts Festival & Market

Join us for the 10th Annual IN THE SPIRIT Contemporary Native Arts Market & Festival on August 8, 2015.

Exhibit Opens July 16 and Runs until August 30, 2015.

2015 ITS Logo

Held each year in August, IN THE SPIRIT: Contemporary Native Arts Market and Festival encompasses a day of dancing, drumming, singing, and shopping with a diverse group of Native American artists. The festival is the final celebration of the IN THE SPIRIT Contemporary Native Arts Exhibit held annually at the History Museum, during which we will present the People's Choice Award. The Museum plaza will be filled with vendors selling exquisite artwork in all price ranges. Round out your festival experience by catching performances of native singers, musicians, and dance groups throughout the day. The History Museum and all festival activities are FREE and open to the public.

In the Spirit 2015 is made possible in part by The Bamford Foundation, the Nisqually Indian Tribe, the Puyallup Indian Tribe, the Tacoma Arts Commission, Wells Fargo, media sponsor KUOW-FM, and Click! Cable TV.

InTheSpiritArts.org

For a full performance schedule, contact Molly Wilmoth at 253-798-5926 or molly.wilmoth@wshs.wa.gov.

 

 

Workshop

 

"Understanding Prehistoric Technology: The Prehistory of Hunting in the Pacific Northwest"

1pm
Saturday, August 15
History Museum
Included in Museum Admission
Free to WSHS Members
Pre-Registration Required 
Dan Meatte, Archaeology Program Manager for Washington State Parks, leads an examination of the prehistoric technology used to build and fashion Native American hunting weapons common to the Pacific Northwest. Hundreds of artifacts, weapons, and tools -- representing over 12,000 years of technological change -- are displayed during the class, affording the audience a chance to handle and examine this remarkable equipment up close. Included in museum admission, free to members. Pre-registration is required. Email Dave Beals at dave.beals@wshs.wa.gov to register.
 

Museo

A Gallery Game for the Whole Family
TUESDAY – SUNDAY

Designed for four to eight players, MUSEO is a Bingo-style game of discovery in the Great Hall of Washington History. Ask for a packet at the information desk and let the sleuthing begin.

More for Kids

Treasure Hunting

In the Great Hall
AVAILABLE TUESDAY – SUNDAY

Ever seen a gold nugget, a plutonium core, or an ox yoke? Keen-eyed young visitors are encouraged to pick up a treasure hunter’s challenge at the information desk and explore the Great Hall’s not-so-hidden treasures of Washington pictured there. A fun, self-directed activity for everyone.

More about the Great Hall

Model Railroad Operators' Hours

FIRST SATURDAY of every month
11 AM - 4PM

The Puget Sound Model Railroad Engineers (PSMRE), the all-volunteer organization that operates the History Museum's permanent model railroad exhibit, holds a special Operators' Hours event on the first Saturday of every month. Operators' Hours is an opportunity to watch the masters at work and ask questions of the model railroad experts!

Model Train Festival