Museum Ramps Up for Fall 

Museum movie series poster

Temperatures have cooled down, and the NC Museum of Natural Sciences (NCMNS) in Whiteville is taking advantage of all the things fall. 

This month’s schedule includes movies, bats, and pumpkins, as well as the facility’s regular ongoing programs.  

Movies on Madison will return to feature the iconic Steven Spielberg film “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” on Friday, Oct. 7. Bring your chairs and a blanket and get ready to “phone home” during the extra-terrestrial presentation.  

The museum’s lawn will be open at 6 p.m. for refreshments and space-related activities. The movie will begin at 7 p.m. 

The event is free, and no registration is required. Drinks and snacks will be available for purchase. If inclement weather should arise, all activities will be moved inside.  

Join the NCMNS for a virtual program via Zoom called “Fantastic Fungi” on Wednesday, Oct. 12, at 4 p.m. Folks will be learning about the importance of fungi to the ecosystem and their strange behavior. Participants involved in ecoEXPLORE will earn five points for this event. 

Head to the Turnbull Creek Educational State Forest in Elizabethtown on Saturday, Oct. 15, at 2 p.m. for a mushroom hike. Attendees will be learning the basics of mushroom identification and observe them in the field. 

The hike will be approximately one hour and 1.5 miles. This is an ecoEXPLORE skills session geared toward ages 5-12 years old, and participants will earn points toward the Mycology field season badge. Space is limited, so reserve your child’s spot at 

Get batty on Thursday, Oct. 20, at 10:30 a.m. at the museum as you read “Stellaluna” by Janell Cannon. 

The book is about a young fruit bat, Stellaluna, who becomes separated from her mother and finds her way to a nest of birds. After the reading, children will be invited to make bat masks to get into the Halloween spirit. The program is for little ones, ages 3-6 years old, but all families are welcome to attend. No registration is required.  

Enjoy a morning of pumpkin play and exploration at the NCMNS in the Nature Playplace on Tuesday, Oct. 25, at 10 a.m. Early childhood education staff will lead outdoor nature activities for kids ages 3-5. Attendees will be playing with pumpkins and learning how they grow. This event is free, and no signup is required.  

The museum still has regular programs that are ongoing throughout the year. Saturday Storytime takes place every second Saturday of month at 10:30 a.m. in partnership with the Columbus Chapter of the N.C. Reading Association.  

Staff, children, and their families read nature-themed books followed by hands-on activities related to the story. This program aims to serve young learners 3-6 years of age, but all nature lovers are welcome. Admission for Storytime is free.  

Playspace pop-ups are available for youngsters every second Tuesday of each month at 10:30 a.m. Your little one will get to enjoy a morning of exploration and play with outdoor activities with museum staff. No registration is required for pop-ups. 

The Museum of Natural Sciences is located at 415 South Madison Street in Whiteville. They are open Tuesday-Saturday from 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. For more information about any of the events at the facility, call 910.788.5100.  

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