Today Brad and I went to the Museum of York County! The museum is open to members only, and you have to make an appointment to see it. While we were there, we saw only three other groups, plus a few people who worked there. So I felt very safe.
During the pandemic, the museum had a (scheduled) complete renovation of one of their halls. It used to be a hall of taxidermied African animals. But they’ve changed it to be a recreation of the Pleistocene animals that used to live in the Piedmont (the area we live in).
It was a REALLY good exhibit! The recreations were fabulous, they were really excellently displayed, and the informational plaques were well written and clear. We spent about an hour and a half going through the new Pleistocene exhibit, plus two of the four other rooms in the museum.
Most of the time it was just us, which was super super nice! Unfortunately for part of the time in the Pleistocene, three families with small shrieking children were there. They were extremely loud and grating on our nerves. They probably weren’t really all that bad, but we’re just not used to going places where there are shrieking children!
As we were in the last part of the Pleistocene exhibit, a museum employee came up to us. She asked me to please hold Hestia.
I said that Hestia is a service dog, and that she has the right to be on the ground if I want her to be. She replied that they were just worried about her “wandering”. I replied that she’s been on leash, 3 feet away from me the entire time I was there (I use an over the shoulder leash).
Then the lady said that they were worried about her eliminating in the new exhibit. So I said again that she’s a service dog, and trained not to do that.
Finally she requested one more time that I carry her, so I asked her if someone came in with a guide dog, if they would ask them to carry their guide dog around the museum?
Brad says that probably someone just came on shift and saw a dog and didn’t realize it was a service dog, and sent this lady to talk with us. But it was very very weird!!! I mean, pet dogs definitely aren’t allowed in this museum, and Hestia was wearing a service dog vest and a service dog leash slide.
The encounter made me feel upset and weird, but we still went in the museum shop when we got done with that last area and saw some cool stuffed animals.
Interesting picture notes, one of my favorite photos is of the Terror Bird, a giant 7 feet tall bird with a huge curved beak and teeny tiny wings. They also had an Armadillo that kids could climb on, so of course Hestia got to sit on it! At the back of the Pleistocene exhibit was a collection of both old fossils and current day animals that are descendants of the animals that roamed here then. Many live in South America and Africa! There is also a picture of Hestia looking at a burrowing squirrel, taken through a log tunnel.
I am wearing a blue dress with red roses and white dogwood flowers on it, with a blue mask with flowers on it. Hestia is a white and black googley eyed dog wearing her galaxy vest. Brad is a man wearing black pants, a blue blazer, a cat bowtie, a pin that is a skeleton of a mer-cat, a black and blue polka dot hat, and a blue mask with red tulips on it (from our friend Sabrina).
SO cool! I love evolutionary biology and natural history and this looks like an exhibit I would have loved!
I would SO love to take you to this museum! They have a whole room that we didn’t visit full of specimens you can touch and handle, with an interpreter there to explain everything!