#GivingTuesday Inspiration: Emeritus Trustee Ann B. Brinkerhoff Gives to HMNS for 40 Plus Years

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Emeritus Trustee Ann B. Brinkerhoff exemplifies commitment to the Houston Museum of Natural Science, giving generously and enthusiastically her time, resources and expertise for over 40 years. As a capstone of her years of service, Ann spearheaded the formation of the HMNS Legacy Society of which she is the Chairman and a Charter Member. “The Museum has been an important part of my life and it was only fitting to provide for the Museum’s future and encourage others to do the same” explained Ann.

Ann’s devotion to the Museum is rooted in her inherent curiosity and love of learning, as well as her dedication to her family. When her children were young, Ann’s spare time was sparse. Yet, she felt bound to serve and found time to volunteer at organizations that benefitted children. She discovered the Houston Museum of Natural Science when her children began taking classes there. She joined the Guild, which she said was very much like the Junior League at that time, and was a docent for several years on Wednesday mornings. “I remembered my first time in front of a group of 4th graders and I was terrified,” she confessed. “Thankfully, I calmed down by focusing on all the lovely and rare objects in the Museum, trying to see them through the children’s eyes.”

Ann’s leadership skills and fundraising acumen flourished in the Guild. She chaired the Guild’s 1973 kitchen tour which raised $25,000—breaking all previous records. “It was a lot of work,” said Ann. “But it was so rewarding because I had a great group of women helping me and I formed many long-lasting friendships.” Ann’s fundraising success, reliability and ability to get things done made her the natural selection as the Guild’s president from 1974-1975.

 

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In 1975, Ann was elected to the HMNS Board of Trustees and continues to serve today as an Emeritus Trustee. During her years of involvement with the Museum, Ann directed her attention and fundraising skills toward three major building campaigns, and saw the Museum’s annual attendance grow from less than 500,000 to more than 3 million. Her special projects have revolved around the Museum’s education and travel programs, and the malacology collection.

In addition to her work at the Museum, Ann has held leadership positions with the Women’s Institute, Hogg Foundation, University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, the Philosophical Society, Institute of Texas Cultures and the University of Texas honors college. A life-long student, Ann is a voracious reader and spent every summer for 10 years taking classes at Cambridge University.

A devoted wife and mother, Ann was married to the late Robert Brinkerhoff, who she met while both were students at the University of Texas. During his lifetime, Robert built a successful oil company, supported Ann’s volunteer endeavors and together they raised four children. Through her work at the Museum and other cultural institutions, Ann brings to life the famous words of her hero, the first female anthropologist, Dr. Margaret Mead, who said “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

We hope you will follow Ann’s lead this #GivingTuesday in supporting the important mission of HMNS.

If you are interested in more information on what you can do to help HMNS out, check out our Giving Tuesday page

And if you are interested in giving to HMNS this holiday season, here is a link to our donations page

What You Might Have Missed – Member Events

By Kim Vera, HMNS Membership Copywriter

 

In August and September we had plenty events to help ease your summer blues and celebrate the beginning of the fall season. Here’s a recap in case you missed out. And be on the lookout for your HMNS weekly newsletter because we are planning a lot of exciting events in the coming months.

 

Members Night at the George Observatory | Friday, Aug. 5

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After being closed due to flooding in Brazos Bend State Park, we were finally able to head back out and enjoy a night of stargazing with snacks, kids’ activities and lots of telescopes for viewing celestial marvels in the night sky.

 

Sugar Land – Block Party, Too! Members’ Event| Friday, Aug. 12

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Members enjoyed an evening of tower building, food, and fun during our members-only event for Block Party, Too! Families were able to roam about the Museum, taking a break every now and then to grab a bite to eat or snack on dessert under a giant Tyrannosaurus rex.

 

2nd Saturdays for Members | Saturday, Aug. 13 and Sept. 10

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During 2nd Saturdays, Members can experience the Museum an hour before the crowds arrive. Tours were available for our Out of the Amazon: Life on the River exhibit and the Morian Hall of Paleontology. For breakfast, Doughmaker Doughnuts served gourmet donuts, a favorite being the French toast, perfectly drenched in maple syrup and powdered sugar. 2nd Saturday is the perfect wakeup call for Members and their little ones. The next 2nd Saturday is on Nov. 12th – and don’t forget your kid’s pass for an extra prize!

 

World Trekkers: South Korea| Friday, Aug. 26

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Passports were stamped, snacks were sampled, and faces were painted! Members were whisked away on a journey to South Korea where students from dojang K-Taekwondo performed demonstrations for the crowds and displayed acts of strength, precision and discipline. After their demonstrations, children has the opportunity to test their own skills with one-on-one training exercises with students from the school. World Trekkers also featured balloon artists and face painters who transformed children into their favorite animals and superheroes and samplings of roasted seaweed, shrimp chips and a chocolate-dipped pretzel stick called Pepero. Travel with us for our last Trekkers of the year as we head off to Ireland in November! See the world with HMNS and don’t forget your World Trekkers passport!

 

Members First! Bill of Rights: Amending America. | Friday, Sept. 1

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In September, HMNS Members enjoyed a brand new benefit, Members First, which gave an in-depth look at the Bill of Rights before the exhibit opened to the public. As a Museum bonus, a historical reenactor was stationed in the Alfred C. Glassell, Jr. Hall giving Members an insight on our humble beginnings in pursuing life, liberty, and happiness.

 

An Evening with the Owls- Members Events| Monday – Wednesday, Sept. 12 – 14

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An Evening with the Owls allowed Members to witness owl butterflies up close in the evening when they were most active. In addition to insect owls, special guests from Wild Life Center of Texas and Sky Kings Falconry introduced guests to feathered owls, including a great horned owl, a tiny screech owl and a beautiful barn owl. Charro, our resident green iguana, even made an appearance at the event to meet and greet guests and eat some snacks provided by staff of the Cockrell Butterfly Center.

 

HMNS Catalysts: An Evening with the Owls | Thursday, Sept. 15

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paperSwarms of owl butterflies fluttered through the air in the Cockrell Butterfly Center as HMNS Catalysts Members attempted to capture pictures of the winged beauties while they landed from head to head in the crowd. Members were greeted that evening with an open bar and the aroma of mouthwatering roasted Berkshire pork loin sliders, crudité of asparagus, and assorted cheeses and olives. Special themed crafts were also available where guests could make their very own butterfly origami and pom pom bugs with googly eyes. Members also got to experience entomophagy – consuming bugs as a source of food – by sampling bowls of chocolate-coated array of insects and crickets and larvets flavored with sour cream and onion, BBQ, and cheddar seasonings.

Mummies of the World: The Exhibition – Members First Viewing and Members Exclusive Event | Friday, Sept. 23

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Mummies of the World: The Exhibition opened with Members First, which allowed members the opportunity to experience this fascinating exhibition before it opened to the public. In the evening, we held our exclusive Members’ event that featured children’s craft tables, a fun photo booth, and a tasty menu of chicken tagine and dulce de leche brownies drizzled in caramel. Once inside the exhibit, HMNS docents enhanced the exhibit experience by providing deeper insights into the process of natural and man-made mummification.

We hope you had as much fun at the members’ events as we did! And check our website often because we will be adding new events soon.

HMNS Weekly Update

Frankenweenie (2012)

 

Friday, October 14 | 7:15 p.m. | Members: $4 | Tickets: $5

 
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Young Victor conducts a science experiment to bring his beloved dog Sparky back to life, only to face unintended, sometimes monstrous, consequences.
 
 

BTS – Mummies of the World: The Exhibition

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October 18, 2016 at  6:00pm

Mummies of the World: The Exhibition presents a collection of mummies from Europe, South America and ancient Egypt-some 4,500 years old.

 

Go behind-the-scenes and learn about mummies and mummification through state-of-the-art multimedia, interactive stations and 3D animation, highlighting advances in the scientific methods used to study mummies, including computed tomography (CT), ancient DNA analysis and radiocarbon dating, all of which allows us to know who these mummified individuals were, where they came from and where they lived.

 

Among the mummies on display are the Vac Mummies, an entire mummified family from Hungary believed to have died from tuberculosis; the Burns Collection, a group of medical mummies used to teach anatomy in the early 19th century; an Egyptian priest named Nes-Hor who suffered from arthritis and a broken left hip; Egyptian animal mummies including a falcon, fish, dog and baby crocodile, many of which were deliberately preserved to accompany royals for eternity; and MUMAB, the first replication of Egyptian mummification done on a body in 2,800 years.

 

Coming Soon!

Lecture – Family Talk – The Griffin and the Dinosaur

Podoke attack! A ten-foot long podokesaur predator menaces the thin-necked herbivore Anchisaurus. Early Jurassic, Massachussetts, somewhere near Amherst College. 

Podoke attack! A ten-foot long podokesaur predator menaces the thin-necked herbivore Anchisaurus. Early Jurassic, Massachussetts, somewhere near Amherst College.

 

Exciting stories about griffins, dragons, sea monsters and giants have been told for thousands of years. Were they real? What is the truth? Children’s author Dr. Adrienne Mayor of Stanford University reveals some suprising secrets connecting fossils with fabulous creatures of myth.

October 22, 2016 at 9:00am

Suggested for grades 6-12 and adults.

Cosponsored by the Archaeological Institute of America Houston Society.

Tickets $5

 

Lecture – Future Humans by Scott Solomon

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Drawing on fields from genomics to medicine and the study of our microbiome, evolutionary biologist Dr. Scott Solomon draws on the explosion of discoveries in recent years to examine the future evolution of our species. But how will modernization—including longer lifespans, changing diets, global travel and widespread use of medicine and contraceptives—affect our evolutionary future? Surprising insights, on topics ranging from the rise of online dating and Cesarean sections to the spread of diseases such as HIV and Ebola, suggest that we are entering a new phase in human evolutionary history—one that makes the future less predictable and more interesting than ever before.

 

Solomon of Rice University will present an entertaining review of the latest evidence of human evolution in modern times. Join us at HMNS this evening which is the book launch event for the new book is “Future Humans: Inside the Science of Our Continuing Evolution.”

This event is co-sponsored by the Baker Institute’s Civic Scientist Program.

October 25,2016 at 6:30pm

Tickets $18, Members $12

 

HMNS Weekly Happenings:

 

 

Mummies are coming!

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Our new special exhibit, Mummies of the World, opens Friday, September 23 for members and noon on Saturday, September 24 for the public!

GET TICKETS HERE

Described as “fascinating, intriguing, and inspiring,” by NBC, “absolutely extraordinary,” by NPR and “a must see,” by FOX TV, Mummies of the World will instill a sense of curiosity and wonder in each and every visitor.

Come face to face with the largest exhibition of real mummies and related artifacts ever assembled. The exhibit provides a window into the lives of ancient people from every region of the world including Europe, South America and Ancient Egypt, offering unprecedented insights into past cultures and civilizations. With over 1.5 million nationwide visitors experiencing Mummies of the World to date, the display at The Houston Museum of Natural Science is the regional premiere!

Embark on a journey into the extraordinary world of mummies and mummification. Through modern science, engaging interactive and multi-media exhibits featuring 3-D animation, explore how mummies are created, where they come from and who they were. Using state-of-the-art scientific methodology, discover how modern science enables researchers to study mummies through innovative and non-invasive ways, offering unprecedented insights into past cultures and civilizations.

What secrets do mummies hold about the past? What clues do they bring us for the future? A journey awaits as we unravel their mysteries.

 

 

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Lecture – Maya Ritual Secrets Revealed by Tomás Gallareta

One can find images of ritual and human sacrifice at many Maya sites. Among these are the Nunnery Quadrangle at Uxmal, the ballcourt, Castillo, Sacred Cenote and the Temple of the Warriors at Chichén Itzá. These depictions shed light on ancient Maya customs surrounding royal succession, and decisions to go to war. Dr. Tomás Gallareta Negrón will explain how Maya ritual is not dead, as shamanism still being practiced today.

This program is co-sponsored by AIA, Houston Society with support from the Mexican Consulate General of Houston and BBVA Compass.

September 20, at 6:30pm

Tickets $18, Members $12.

 

Coming Soon!

 

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Lecture – The Gettysburg Event by Brian Matthew Jordan and Ed W. Clark

Recognized as having the most casualties of any other engagement, the Battle of Gettysburg is noted as the turning point of Civil War in 1863. Traditional Civil War histories have concluded in 1865, now Dr. Brian Jordan has mined previously untapped archives—soldiers’ anguished letters and diaries, and gruesome medical reports—to trace a Union regiment’s shocking transition from the battlefield to the home front.

Instead of being welcomed home as heroes, these veterans—tending rotting wounds, battling alcoholism, campaigning for paltry pensions—tragically realized that they stood as unwelcome reminders to a new America eager to heal, forget and embrace the freewheeling bounty of the Gilded Age.

Also speaking this evening will be Ed W. Clark, Superintendent of Gettysburg National Military Park, who will address the current state of affairs at Gettysburg. A book signing of Dr. Jordan’s Pulitzer Prize-nominated book “Marching Home: Union Veterans and Their Unending Civil War” will follow the lecture.

This program is co-sponsored by the Gettysburg Foundation.

September 27, at 6:30 pm

Tickets $18, Members $1

 

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Cultural Feast – Oktoberfest: The History and Science of Beer
In 1810, King Ludwig I of Bavaria proclaimed that the last sixteen days of September, ending with the first full weekend in October, should be set aside for feasting and beer drinking. To commemorate this tradition, join HMNS at St. Arnold Brewing Co. for the history and science of beer making. Tour St. Arnold³ production facility with founder Brock Wagner and special guest Scott Birdwell of DeFalco’s Home Wine and Beer. Drink your fill of brew and enjoy Bavarian pretzels and sausage.

Hosted at St. Arnold Brewing Company. 21 and up only.

Tickets $59, Members $49

Advance ticket purchase is required by September 25. No refunds will be made 72 hours before the event, however tickets can be transferred to another individual. Please notify webmaster@hmns.org with your name, transaction number, and name of the guests using your tickets.