Museum grand opening in Hilo features cave lions and saber-toothed tigers

A life-size Smilodon fatalis, commonly known as the saber-toothed cat, will greet visitors to the Hawaii Museum of Science and Technology. PC: HSTM

On June 11, the Hawaii Science & Technology Museum is hosting a grand opening of its new exhibit hall at the Kaikodo Building, 64 Keawe St. in downtown Hilo.

This year’s exhibit hall theme will focus on natural history, showcasing fossils such as cave lions, mosasaurs, ichthyosaurs and a life-size saber-toothed tiger (Smilodon fatalis) that the museum acquired La Brea Tar Pits in California.

“Our vision for our new exhibit hall is to create a space where families can come and feel comfortable and spend quality time with each other while exploring engaging hands-on science activities,” said the executive director of HSTM, Christian Wong. Add to that the wonderful partnerships we have developed with our downtown partner museums, families can spend the whole day exploring, learning and above all having fun.

HSTM has been serving the island of Hawaii community as a non-profit science, technology, engineering, arts, and math education organization since 2015, offering science camps , after-school programs, tutoring and special events such as science nights at local schools.

At the grand opening, HSTM will join the East Hawai’i Cultural Center, the Pacific Tsunami Museum and the Mokupāpapa Discovery Center in celebrating World Oceans Day, as the first major collaboration of the four museums working together in community benefit scheduled from 10 a.m. at 2 p.m. in Kalākaua Park.

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“We look forward to a fun-filled day of events and activities showcasing our wonderful downtown Hilo community” – Kellie Miyazu, Director of Education for EHCC, said.

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EHCC will also be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on June 11 with its new exhibit, “After Life.” The Pacific Tsunami Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

After a two-year hiatus due to COVID, World Oceans Day also marks the reopening of the Mokupāpapa Discovery Center in the Koehnen’s Building at 76 Kamehameha Ave.

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