Jean S. Adams Education Pavilion

The Jean S. Adams Outdoor Education Pavilion represents a significant economic development and quality of life initiative that will generate greater public awareness of the Virginia Museum of Natural History, partnering organizations and the entire region. The Pavilion and its resulting education programs, interpretive elements and multi-use functionality will enhance the experiences of students, visitors and other groups through extended visits, enriched interpretation, and multi-use opportunities. In addition to enhancing visitor experiences, the Pavilion will serve as a significant draw for increased visitation to the museum and the region.

The increased awareness of the participating institutions and the region will result in increased visits by visitors from the primary audience of those living within a 50-mile radius of Martinsville, along with increased visitor spending throughout the region.

Jean S. Adams Education Pavilion: Exhibits

In order to supplement the visitor experience, while enhancing critical STEM-based lessons, the museum is leading a public campaign to raise $25,000 for the first-ever life-sized model of Pelagornis sandersi, the bird with the largest wingspan ever known. This one-of-a-kind exhibit will be featured in the Jean S. Adams Education Pavilion.

Want to help make the Pelagornis model a reality?  Click here to donate online via Facebook!

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VMNH leaders are working with Research Casting International, a world-renowned exhibit design firm based in Ontario, Canada, to design and build the first ever life-sized model of Pelagornis sandersi. This display will be suspended within the Jean S. Adams Education Pavilion, supporting lessons on ecology in connection with J. Frank Wilson Park.

Pelagornis sandersi, the bird with the largest wingspan ever known, once flew over Virginia with a wingspan of over 20 feet. Museum leaders are working with Research Casting International to construct the first-ever, life-sized, 3-D model of this amazing creature, which will be displayed within the new Jean S. Adams Education Pavilion opening in spring 2020. As we continue to expand our public programs and partnerships with area schools, this one-of-a-kind exhibit and its corresponding STEM-based lessons will help us inspire thousands of students and families each year.

Jean S. Adams Education Pavilion: Status and Timeline

Museum leaders have secured support for the construction of the Jean S. Adams Education Pavilion, with funding provided by Mr. George Adams and family, the Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission, the Harvest Foundation, Mr. William Mayer, and other donors. Thanks to a wonderful gift from Mr. Adams and his family, the structure has been named in memory of his late wife, Jean S. Adams.

Architectural design of the Pavilion with Carter + Burton Architects

February 1 – April 30
Public fundraising campaign for the Pelagornis exhibit

June 11
Groundbreaking ceremony for the Pavilion

Summer 2019 – Spring 2020
Construction of the Pavilion and installation of the featured Pelagornis exhibit