The Museum of Riverside is launching a new monthly series spotlighting local topics, “Nights with the Museum.”  Join us to learn about new research, thoughtful observations, unique traits of our area, and fascinating facts.

What?      A fascinating talk and discussion, no previous experience necessary.
When?     First Fridays of the month, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Where?    Back to the Grind, 3575 University Avenue, Riverside – directly behind                                     the Museum of Riverside.
Who?       Different every month!
Free?       Yes, but donations are welcome.

Friday, January 7, 2022
6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Eric Scott, Cogstone Resource Management, Inc.; Dept. of Biology, California State University San Bernardino
Treasures Beneath Our Feet – Finding Fossils and Dodging Bulldozers in Urban California
Mr. Scott will share new discoveries of Ice Age fossils from the Purple Line Extension subway excavation in Los Angeles, near the world-famous La Brea Tar Pits, and will compare these finds with fossils found at construction sites right here in Riverside County.

Friday, February 4, 2022
6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Gabriel Santos, Paleontologist & Educator, Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology
Krayt Dragons to Indominus Rex: Paleontology in Pop Culture
From Star Wars to Jurassic Park, let’s open the pages of time to see how the story of the ancient past has inspired some of our favorite stories of today.

Friday, March 4, 2022
6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Chris Clark, Ph.D. and Professor of Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology at UC Riverside
How Hummingbirds Hum and Owls Fly Silently
Dr. Clark will describe ongoing research into how and why animals make sounds with their wings,such as the humming of hummingbirds, or the ghostly silence of owl flight.

Friday, April 1, 2022
6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Lei Lani Stelle, Ph.D. and Professor of Biology at University of Redlands
Chasing Whales with High Technology
Dr. Stelle will show how her array of modern approaches to marine mammal research in southern California is unlocking secrets and providing keys to their protection and recovery.

Friday, May 6, 2022
6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Edward T. Chang, Ph.D. and founding director of the Young Oak Kim Center for Korean American
Studies and Professor of Ethnic Studies, UC Riverside
Pachappa: America’s First Koreatown
Dr. Chang will explain how Korean patriot Dosan Ahn Chang Ho founded Riverside’s Pachappa Camp in 1905, known as the first Koreatown in America. Home to Korean Americans who held jobs in the local citrus industry as farm laborers, Pachappa represented the earliest Korean culture and identity in America.

Friday, June 3, 2022
6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Michael Viramontes, Land Steward, Rivers & Lands Conservancy
I Protect Detestable Microfauna
Conservation in the Inland Empire isn’t all about monarch butterflies and mountain lions. Learn more about Michael Miramontes’ public relations nightmare of fighting for rare and endangered flies, rats and suckers.

Friday, July 1, 2022
6:30-8:00 p.m.
Douglas J. Long, PhD, Museum of Riverside
The King of Snakes, or, How to Eat a Rattlesnake Larger Than You
Some facts are better than myths, and Dr. long will share the secrets of our local California Kingsnake. Live kingsnakes might just be in attendance.

Friday, August 5, 2022
6:30-8:00 p.m.
Scott Watson, City of Riverside Historic Preservation Officer
The Mid-century Modern Marvels of Clinton Marr
Scott will explore the Inland Empire’s architectural masterpieces designed by the renowned Clinton Marr. The Googie style might be mentioned (or might not).

Friday, September 2, 2022
6:30-8:00 p.m.
Matina Donaldson-Matasci, Ph.D., and Morgan Carr-Markel, Ph.D, Dept. of Biology at Harvey Mudd College
The Secret Language of Bees
Good relationships are all about communication, and in social insects, these complex languages coordinate group behavior and long-term survival. See how Drs. Donaldson-Matasci and Carr-Merkel are deciphering the language of social insects and how they work as coordinated groups.

Friday, October 7, 2022
6:30-8:00 p.m.
David Oglesby, Ph.D., Professor of Geophysics, Earth and Planetary Sciences at UC Riverside.
What’s Shakin’, Riverside?
Dr. Oglesby will provide an overview of the tectonic faults through the Inland Empire and his research on studying earthquakes in our fractured land.

Friday, November 4, 2022
6:30-8:00 p.m.
John Torres, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Archaeology at Mt. San Jacinto College
Cultural remains of California’s native peoples are all around, if you know how and where to look
Dr. Torres will share how he is training the next generation of tribal archaeologists to recover, preserve, and share their ancestral heritage.

Friday, December 2, 2022
6:30-8:00 p.m.
Ivan Parr, Western Section of the Wildlife Society
The Rarest of the Rare: Hunting California’s Endemic Wildlife with a Camera
Join Ivan, a wildlife biologist and professional photographer on his quest to record non-charismatic but incredibly rare species found only in California, with stories of scientific success and comedic failure along the way.

Speakers are subject to change. Contact Museum of Riverside Curator of Natural History Dr. Douglas J. Long for more information at

Thursday, March 3, 2022
6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Stop at the Museum of Riverside’s front steps, 3580 Mission Inn Avenue, to participate in an interactive art installation. Susan Ossman’s “One and Many” is an outgrowth of the disruptions of the pandemic, which have led us to reflect on the relationship of the individual to the community, nation, and world.

First Sundays
Sunday, March 6, 2022
1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Reptile Round-Up!
Front steps of the Museum of Riverside, 3580 Mission Inn Avenue. Join Riverside’s own Reptile Joe who will bring some of his favorite snakes and lizards to share and talk about how these animals adapt to their environments. Create your own scale pattern with paints and upcycled bubble-wrap for a paper snake or lizard to take home

Sunday, April 3, 2022
1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Captain Carl and His Mobile Tidepool
Front steps of the Museum of Riverside, 3580 Mission Inn Avenue. Be here for the return of Captain Carl and his amazing sea creatures! You’ll be able to hold a starfish, squeeze a sea squirt, and touch an urchin as we bring a bit of the shore to Riverside. Learn about how you can reduce your use of plastics and make a sustainability pledge to help keep our oceans clean.

Sunday, May 1, 2022
1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Koinobori, Children’s Day
May 5th is Kodomo no Hi, or Chidren’s Day, in Japan. On this day, once known as Boys’ Day, families fly carp banners called koinobori to represent all the members of the family. We’ll celebrate this holiday by making our own koinobori inspired by the art of Miné Okubo, who was born and raised in Riverside.