Members' Nights

About this recurring event

Experience the museum like a VIP at our first-ever virtual Members' Nights.

A visitor takes a close look at a fossilized skull. He stands beside the skull, between a row shelves containing other fossil specimens in the Field Museum's collection.

Field Museum members get unprecedented access to areas normally off-limits and a peek at rarely seen items from our vast collection.

This year, Members’ Nights are virtual! Explore the museum from the comfort of your home during this three-day, digital event. As a member, you’ll join us for behind-the-scenes tours of our science and collections led by scientists, curators, and more. Roam between oversized fossils. Meet the creatures in our fan-favorite live insect zoo. (They’re ready for their close-ups on camera this year!) Take in the artistry of Native beadwork from North America. We’re also opening up areas of the museum that you might not have seen before—even during previous Members Nights. Tune in to see what you’ll encounter.

This event is free for Field members with advance registration. All tours are hosted in Zoom, and you’ll receive your link to the events after registering.

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Not yet a member? Become one to enjoy Members’ Nights, free admission, and more throughout the year.

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Schedule of events

Members’ Nights kick off on November 19 with a special one-hour tour with President and CEO Julian Siggers. Then, join us on November 20 and 21 for any or all of the 20-minute sessions showcasing different collections and exhibitions. Each day also includes two 15-minute breaks. You can test your knowledge with Field trivia while also stretching your legs or grabbing a snack. The museum's online store is always open, so stock up on Field treats, gear, and more to celebrate the day. 

Share questions for our hosts in advance by sending them to askthefield@fieldmuseum.org. And don’t worry if you miss a session. We’re recording all sessions to share with members after the event.

Time Session Description Speaker(s)
6:30–7:30pm Tour the Kish Collection in the Anthropology Collection Explore one of the earliest urban cities in human history with President and CEO Julian Siggers and Director of the Gantz Family Collections Center Deborah Bekken.
Julian Siggers, 
President and CEO
 
Deborah Bekken, Director, Gantz Family Collections Center
 

 

Time Session Description Speaker(s)
4–4:20pm Tour the Dermestid Beetles in the Birds Prep Lab Go behind the scenes in the Birds Prep lab to meet the live dermestid beetle colonies that work tirelessly with our scientists to prepare skeletal specimens. See what they're cleaning and learn how the Museum prepares bones.  Mary Hennen, Assistant Collections Manager, Birds
4:20–4:40pm Tour Moccasins and Beads in the Anthropology Collection Join our collections and conservation staff as they show examples of beaded moccassins from our Native North America collection, as well as their own contemporary beadwork. Then, learn how to make your own!
Steph Black, Conservator
 
J. Kae Good Bear, Conservation Technician
 
Michelle Brownlee, Collections Assistant 
4:40–5pm Tour Mummies in the Regenstein Conservation Lab Meet the person inside the mummy through state-of-the-art imaging technology. With the help of CT Scanners and 3D imaging, scientists explore what the lives of people may have been like--and so can you! JP Brown, Regenstein Conservator
5–5:15pm Break    
5:15–5:35pm Tour Totem Poles in the Anthropology Collection During the Museum's closure this summer, the Anthropology Conservation team cleaned and photographed all 22 house posts and totem poles on display in the Alsdorf Hall of Northwest Coast and Arctic Peoples. Join the Anthro Collections and Conservation team as they talk about how they cleaned these posts and used photogrammetry, an imaging technique that uses overlapping photographs to produce 3D models, to document our collections.  
Mackenzie Fairchild, Conservation Assistant
 
Erin Murphy, Assistant Conservator
 
Ellen Jordan, Conservation Technician
 
Emily Starck, Assistant Collections Manager
5:35–5:55pm Tour Gems from the Vaults of Geology Collection Go behind the scenes to see some of the rare and beautiful gems not on display in the Grainger Hall of Gems.  Jim Holstein, Collections Manager, Physical Geology 
5:55–6:10pm Break    
6:10–6:30pm Tour Large Fish and Lake Monsters in the Fishes Collection You've seen the shelves on shelves of jars containing small fishes in our colleciton, but how do we store large fish? Go behind the scenes to find out! Susan Mochel, Assistant Collections Manager, Fishes
6:30–6:50pm Tour Green River Fossils in the Paleontology Collection Fossils found in the Green River Formation of Wyoming are famous for their beauty and exquisite detail. Join us for an up-close look at these pristine fossil birds and fish. Jingmai O'Connor, Associate Curator of Fossil Reptilies 
6:50–7:10pm Tour Hats and Headgear in the Anthropology Colleciton From simple caps to elaborate headdresses, explore a brief history of headwear from around the world. Discover the variety of ways we accessorize our heads with highlights from the East Asian anthropology collections. Jamie Kelly, of Anthropology Collections
7:10–7:15pm Wrap up and Thank Yous     

 

Time Session Description Speaker(s)
10–10:20am Tour Unseen Specimens in the Botany Collection Explore never before seen specimens from the Museum's immense botany collections. 
Matt von Konrat, Head of Botanical Collections
10:20–10:40am Tour Live Bugs in the Insect Collection See live insects, spiders, and more. Learn about the importance of insects and spiders and how they are being affected by human activity. Jim Louderman, Collections Assistant, Insects 
10:40–11am Tour Friendly and Deadly Fungai in the Botany Collections Fungi are bad, right?  But wait...aren't some of them helpful? Learn more about some of the cool ways fungi have evolved to help and hurt plants, animals and even other fungi! Matthew Nelsen, Research Scientist
11–11:15am Break    
11:15–11:35am Tour Space Rocks in the Meteorites Collection The mysteries of space often leave us with more questions than answers, but meteorites can tell us many things about the history of our solar system. Get an up-close look at what scientists at the Field learn by studying meteorites.   Philipp Heck, Robert A. Pritzker Curator of Meteoritics and Polar Studies
11:35–11:55am Tour the Fossil Prep Lab Before fossils are put on display in the museum, we meticulously prepare the specimens in labs. Learn how fossil preparators carve and clean specimens in their at-home labs.
Akiko Shinya, Chief Preparator 
 
Connie van Beek, Preparator
11:55am–12:10pm Break    
12:10–12:30pm Tour Prehistoric Chicago in the Invertebrate Fossil Collection Go behind-the-scenes to explore prehistoric Chicago invertebrates in the Museum's collections.   Paul Mayer, Collections Manager, Fossil Invertebrates
12:30–12:50pm Tour Rare Books in the Marie Louise Rosenthal Library Join us for an exclusive tour of the Museum's Rare Book Room. See some of the most rare and unique items in the Marie Louise Rosenthal Lirbary. 
Gretchen Rings, Head of Library Collections
 
Diana Duncan, Technical Services Librarian
12:50–1:10pm Tour Dinosaur Bones in the Oversized Paleontology Collection Take a journey through the oversized paleontology collection to discovery the Field's large collection of dinosaur bones. 

 
Bill Simpson, Head of Geological Collections
1:10–1:15pm Wrap up and Thank Yous     

 

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