AFRICAN AMERICAN MUSEUM AND LIBRARY AT OAKLAND ongoing. The Oakland Public Library's museum is designed to discover, preserve, interpret and share the cultural and historical experiences of African Americans in California and the West. In addition, a three-panel mural is on permanent display.
Free. Tuesday-Saturday, noon-5:30 p.m. 659 14th St., Oakland. (510) 637-0200, www.oaklandlibrary.org.<
ALAMEDA MUSEUM ongoing. The museum offers permanent displays of Alameda history, the only rotating gallery showcasing local Alameda artists and student artwork, as well as souvenirs, books and videos about the rich history of the Island City.
Free. Wednesday-Friday and Sunday, 1-4 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. 2324 Alameda Ave., Alameda. (510) 521-1233, www.alamedamuseum.org.<
BADE MUSEUM AT THE PACIFIC SCHOOL OF RELIGION The museum's collections include the Tell en-Nasbeh Collection, consisting of artifacts excavated from Tell en-Nasbeh in Palestine in 1926 and 1935 by William Badh, and the Howell Bible Collection, featuring approximately 300 rare books (primarily Bibles) dating from the 15th through the 18th centuries.
"Tell en-Nasbeh," ongoing. This exhibit is the "heart and soul" of the Bade Museum. It displays a wealth of finds from the excavations at Tell en-Nasbeh, Palestine whose objects span from the Early Bronze Age (3100-2200 BC) through the Iron Age (1200-586 BC) and into the Roman and Hellenistic periods. Highlights of the exhibit include "Tools of the Trade" featuring real archaeological tools used by Badh and his team, an oil lamp typology, a Second Temple period (586 BC-70 AD) limestone ossuary, and a selection of painted Greek pottery.
"William Frederic Bade: Theologian, Naturalist, and Archaeologist," ongoing. This exhibit highlights one of PSR's premier educators and innovative scholars. The collection of material on display was chosen with the hopes of representing the truly dynamic and multifaceted character of William F. Badh. He was a family man, a dedicated teacher, a loving friend, and an innovative and passionate archaeologist.
Free. Tuesday-Thursday, 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Holbrook Hall, Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Ave., Berkeley. (510) 848-0528, www.bade.psr.edu/bade.<
BERKELEY ART MUSEUM AND PACIFIC FILM ARCHIVE
"Thom Faulders: BAMscape," through Nov. 30. This commissioned work, a hybrid of sculpture, furniture, and stage, is the new centerpiece of Gallery B, BAM's expansive central atrium. It is part of a new vision of the gallery as a space for interaction, performance, and improvised experiences.
2626 Bancroft Way, Berkeley. <
BLACKHAWK MUSEUM ongoing.
AUTOMOTIVE MUSEUM -- The museum's permanent exhibition of internationally renowned automobiles dated from 1897 to the 1980s. The cars are displayed as works of art with room to walk completely around each car to admire the workmanship. On long-term loan from the Smithsonian Institution is a Long Steam Tricycle; an 1893-94 Duryea, the first Duryea built by the Duryea brothers; and a 1948 Tucker, number 39 of the 51 Tuckers built, which is a Model 48 "Torpedo'' four-door sedan. "International Automotive Treasures," ongoing. An ever-changing exhibit featuring over 90 automobiles.
"A Journey on Common Ground," ongoing. An exhibit of moving photographs, video and art objects from around the world exploring the causes of disability and the efforts of the Wheelchair Foundation to provide a wheelchair for every person in need who cannot afford one. Free Public Tours, Saturday and Sunday, 2 p.m. Docent-led guided tours of the museum's exhibitions.
$5-$8; free for children ages 6 and under. Wednesday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 3700 Blackhawk Plaza Circle, Danville. (925) 736-2280, (925) 736-2277, www.blackhawkmuseum.org.<
CHABOT SPACE AND SCIENCE CENTER State-of-the-art facility unifying science education activities around astronomy. Enjoy interactive exhibits, hands-on activities, indoor stargazing, outdoor telescope viewing and films.
"Beyond Blastoff: Surviving in Space," ongoing. An interactive exhibit that allows you to immerse yourself into the life of an astronaut to experience the mixture of exhilaration, adventure and confinement that is living and working in space.
"Chabot Observatories: A View to the Stars," ongoing. Explore the history of the Chabot observatories and how its historic telescopes are used today. Daytime visitors can virtually operate a telescope, experiment with mirrors and lenses to understand how telescopes create images of distant objects and travel through more than a century of Chabot's history via multimedia kiosks, historical images and artifact displays. "Galaxy Explorers Hands-On Fun," ongoing. Saturday, noon-4 p.m. The Galaxy Explorers lead a variety of fun, hands-on activities, such as examining real spacesuits, creating galaxy flipbooks, learning about telescopes, minerals and skulls and making your own comet. Free with general admission.
"Daytime Telescope Viewing," ongoing. Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. View the sun, the moon and the planets through the telescopes during the day. Free with general admission.
"Live Daytime Planetarium Show," ongoing. Saturdays, 2:30 p.m. Ride through real-time constellations, stars and planets with Chabot's full-dome digital projection system.
Center Admission: $14.95; $10.95 children 3-12; free children under 3; $3 discount for seniors and students. Telescope viewing only: free. Wednesday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Also open on Tuesdays 10 a.m.-5 p.m. after June 29. 10000 Skyline Blvd., Oakland. (510) 336-7300, www.chabotspace.org.<
HABITOT CHILDREN'S MUSEUM A museum especially for children ages 7 and under. Highlights include "WaterWorks,'' an area with some unusual water toys, an Infant Tree for babies, a garden especially for toddlers, a child-scale grocery store and cafe, and a costume shop and stage for junior thespians. The museum also features a toy lending library. "Waterworks." A water play gallery with rivers, a pumping station and a water table, designed to teach about water.
"Little Town Grocery and Cafe." Designed to create the ambience of shopping in a grocery store and eating in a restaurant.
"Infant-Toddler Garden." A picket fence gated indoor area, which includes a carrot patch with wooden carrots to be harvested, a pretend pond and a butterfly mobile to introduce youngsters to the concept of food, gardening and agriculture.
"Dramatic Arts Stage." Settings, backdrops and costumes coincide with seasonal events and holidays. Children can exercise their dramatic flair here.
"Wiggle Wall." The floor-to-ceiling "underground'' tunnels give children a worm's eye view of the world. The tunnels are laced with net covered openings and giant optic lenses.
"Architects at Play," ongoing. This hands-on, construction-based miniexhibit provides children with the opportunity to create free-form structures, from skyscrapers to bridges, using KEVA planks. $6-$7. Wednesday and Thursday, 9:30 a.m.-1 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Closed Sunday-Tuesday. 2065 Kittredge St., Berkeley. (510) 647-1111, www.habitot.org.<
HALL OF HEALTH ongoing. A community health-education museum and science center promoting wellness and individual responsibility for health. There are hands-on exhibits that teach about the workings of the human body, the value of a healthy diet and exercise, and the destructive effects of smoking and drug abuse. "Kids on the Block'' puppet shows, which use puppets from diverse cultures to teach about and promote acceptance of conditions such as cerebral palsy, Down Syndrome, leukemia, blindness, arthritis and spina bifida, are available by request for community events and groups visiting the Hall on Saturdays. "This Is Your Heart!" ongoing. An interactive exhibit on heart health.
"Good Nutrition," ongoing. This exhibit includes models for making balanced meals and an Exercycle for calculating how calories are burned.
"Draw Your Own Insides," ongoing. Human-shaped chalkboards and models with removable organs allow visitors to explore the inside of their bodies.
"Your Cellular Self and Cancer Prevention," ongoing. An exhibit on understanding how cells become cancerous and how to detect and prevent cancer.
Suggested $3 donation; free for children under age 3. Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 2230 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. (510) 549-1564, www.hallofhealth.org.<
HAYWARD AREA HISTORICAL SOCIETY MUSEUM The museum is located in a former post office and displays memorabilia of early Hayward and southern Alameda County. Some of the features include a restored 1923 Seagrave fire engine and a hand pumper from the Hayward Fire Department, founded in 1865; a Hayward Police Department exhibit; information on city founder William Hayward; and pictures of the old Hayward Hotel. The museum also alternates three exhibits per year, including a Christmas Toys exhibit and a 1950s lifestyle exhibit.50 cents-$1. Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. 22701 Main St., Hayward. (510) 581-0223, www.haywardareahistory.org.<
JUDAH L. MAGNES MUSEUM The museum's permanent collection includes objects of Jewish importance including ceremonial art, film and video, folk art and fine art, paintings, sculptures and prints by contemporary and historical artists.
"Projections," ongoing. Multimedia works from the museum's extensive collections of archival, documentary and experimental films. Located at 2911 Russell Street. $4-$6; free for children under age 12. Sunday-Wednesday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. CLOSED APRIL 3-4 AND 9-10; MAY 23-24 AND 28; JULY 4; SEPT. 3, 13 AND 27; OCT. 4; NOV. 22; DEC. 24-25 AND 31. 2911 Russell St., Berkeley. (510) 549-6950, www.magnes.org.<
LAWRENCE HALL OF SCIENCE "NanoZone," ongoing. Discover the science of the super-small: nanotechnology. Through hands-on activities and games, explore this microworld and the scientific discoveries made in this area.
"Forces That Shape the Bay," ongoing. A science park that shows and explains why the San Francisco Bay is the way it is, with information on water, erosion, plate tectonics and mountain building. You can ride earthquake simulators, set erosion in motion and look far out into the bay with a powerful telescope from 1,100 feet above sea level. The center of the exhibit is a waterfall that demonstrates how water flows from the Sierra Nevada Mountains to the Bay. Visitors can control where the water goes. There are also hands-on erosion tables, and a 40-foot-long, 6-foothigh, rock compression wall.
"Real Astronomy Experience," ongoing. A new exhibit-in-development allowing visitors to use the tools that real astronomers use. Aim a telescope at a virtual sky and operate a remote-controlled telescope to measure a planet.
"Biology Lab," ongoing. In the renovated Biology Lab visitors may hold and observe gentle animals. Saturday, Sunday and holidays, 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
"The Idea Lab," ongoing. Experiment with some of the basics of math, science and technology through hands-on activities and demonstrations of magnets, spinning and flying, puzzles and nanotechnology.
"Math Around the World," ongoing. Play some of the world's most popular math games, such as Hex, Kalah, Game Sticks and Shongo Networks.
"Math Rules," ongoing. Use simple and colorful objects to complete interesting challenges in math through predicting, sorting, comparing, weighing and counting.
"Animal Discovery Room,,' ongoing. 1:30-4 p.m. Visitors of all ages can hold and touch gentle animals, learn about their behavior and habitats and play with self-guided activities and specimen models.
"Forces That Shape the Bay," ongoing. This science park shows and explains why the San Francisco Bay is the way it is, with information on water, erosion, plate tectonics and mountain building.
"Ingenuity in Action," ongoing. Summer 2010. Enjoy the best of the Ingenuity Lab. Engage your creative brain and use a variety of materials to design, build and test your own innovations.
"Kapla," ongoing. Play with simple, versatile building blocks that can be used to build very large, high and stable structures.
"KidsLab," ongoing. This multisensory play area includes larger-than-life blocks, a crawl-through kaleidoscope, the Gravity wall, a puppet theater and a reading area.
"NanoZone," ongoing. Discover the science of nanotechnology through handson activities and games.
"Planetarium," ongoing. Explore the skies in this interactive planetarium.
"Science on a Sphere," ongoing. Catch an out-of-this-world experience with an animated globe. See hurricanes form, tsunamis sweep across the oceans and city lights glow around the planet. $6-$12; free children ages 2 and under. Daily, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. University of California, Centennial Drive, Berkeley. (510) 642-5132, www.lawrencehallofscience.org.<
LINDSAY WILDLIFE MUSEUM This is the oldest and largest wildlife rehabilitation center in America, taking in 6,000 injured and orphaned animals yearly and returning 40 percent of them to the wild. The museum offers a wide range of educational programs using non-releasable wild animals to teach children and adults respect for the balance of nature. The museum includes a state-of-the art wildlife hospital which features a permanent exhibit, titled "Living with Nature,'' which houses 75 non-releasable wild animals in learning environments; a 5,000-square-foot Wildlife Hospital complete with treatment rooms, intensive care, quarantine and laboratory facilities; a 1-acre Nature Garden featuring the region's native landscaping and wildlife; and an "Especially For Children'' exhibit.
WILDLIFE HOSPITAL -- September-March: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The hospital is open daily including holidays to receive injured and orphaned animals. There is no charge for treatment of native wild animals and there are no public viewing areas in the hospital.SPECIAL EVENTS -- ongoing.
$5-$7; free children under age 2. June 16-Sept. 15: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Wed.-Sun.; Sept. 16-June 15: noon.-5 p.m. Wed.-Fri., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sat.-Sun. 1931 First Ave., Walnut Creek. (925) 935-1978, www.wildlife-museum.org.<
MEYERS HOUSE AND GARDEN MUSEUM The Meyers House, erected in 1897, is an example of Colonial Revival, an architectural style popular around the turn of the century. Designed by Henry H. Meyers,the house was built by his father, Jacob Meyers, at a cost of $4000.00.$3. Fourth Saturday of every month. 2021 Alameda Ave., Alameda. (510) 521-1247, www.alamedamuseum.org/meyers.html.<
MUSEUM OF AFRICAN-AMERICAN TECHNOLOGY SCIENCE VILLAGE ongoing. A science museum with an African-American focus promoting science education and awareness for the underrepresented. The science village chronicles the technical achievements of people of African descent from ancient ties to present. There are computer classes at the Internet Cafi, science education activities and seminars. There is also a resource library with a collection of books, periodicals and videotapes.
$4-$6. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday, noon-6 p.m.; Sunday, 2 p.m.-6 p.m. 630 20th St., Oakland. (510) 893-6426, www.ncalifblackengineers.org.<
MUSEUM OF CHILDREN'S ART A museum of art for and by children, with activities for children to participate in making their own art.
ART CAMPS -- Hands-on activities and engaging curriculum for children of different ages, led by professional artists and staff. $60 per day.
CLASSES -- A Sunday series of classes for children ages 8 to 12, led by Mocha artists. Sundays, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
OPEN STUDIOS -- Drop-in art play activities with new themes each week.
"Big Studio." Guided art projects for children age 6 and older with a Mocha artist. Tuesday through Friday, 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. $5.
"Little Studio." A hands-on experience that lets young artists age 18 months to 5 years see, touch and manipulate a variety of media. Children can get messy. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. $5.
"Family Weekend Studios." Drop-in art activities for the whole family. All ages welcome. Saturday and Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. $5 per child.
FAMILY EXTRAVAGANZAS -- Special weekend workshops for the entire family.
"Sunday Workshops with Illustrators," Sundays, 1 p.m. See the artwork and meet the artists who create children's book illustrations. Free."Saturday Stories," ongoing. 1 p.m. For children ages 2-5. Free.
Free gallery admission. Tuesday-Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday, noon-5 p.m. 538 Ninth St., Oakland. (510) 465-8770, www.mocha.org.<
MUSEUM OF THE SAN RAMON VALLEY The museum features local artifacts, pictures, flags and drawings commemorating the valley's history. It also houses a historical narrative frieze. In addition to a permanent exhibit on the valley's history, the museum sponsors revolving exhibits and several guided tours. The restored railroad depot that houses the museum was built on the San Ramon Branch Line of the Southern Pacific Railroad 108 years ago.Free. August: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. The Depot, West Prospect and Railroad avenues, Danville. (925) 837-3750, www.museumsrv.org.<
MUSEUM ON MAIN STREET Located in a former town hall building, this museum is a piece of local history. It has a photo and document archive, collection of artifacts, local history publications for purchase, and a history library. It is supported by the Amador-Livermore Valley Historical Society.$2. Wednesday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sunday, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.; CLOSED DEC. 23-JAN. 8. 603 Main St., Pleasanton. (925) 462-2766, www.museumonmain.org.<
OAKLAND MUSEUM OF CALIFORNIA "Art a la Carte," Wednesdays, 12:30 p.m. Art docents offer a variety of specialized tours focusing on one aspect of the museum's permanent collection. Free with museum admission.
"Online Museum," Thursdays, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Explore the museum's collection on videodisks in the History Department Library.
Docent Gallery Tours, Saturday and Sunday, 1:30 p.m.
"Explore our New Gallery," through Dec. 2. The new Gallery of California Art showcases more than 800 works from OMCA's collection-one of the largest and most comprehensive holdings of California art in the world.
"Gallery of California History," through Dec. 2. This new gallery is based on the theme of Coming to California.
$5-$8; free for children ages 5 and under; free to all on the second Sunday of the month. Special events are free with museum admission unless noted otherwise. Wednesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday, noon-5 p.m.; first Friday of the month, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. 1000 Oak St., Oakland. (510) 238-2200, www.museumca.org.<
PARDEE HOME MUSEUM ongoing. The historic Pardee Mansion, a three-story Italianate villa built in 1868, was home to three generations of the Pardee family who were instrumental in the civic and cultural development of California and Oakland. The home includes the house, grounds, water tower and barn. Reservations recommended. Group tours may be arranged between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Tues.-Sun.
Private Tours and Teas: Take a private tour followed by tea in the Pardee family dining room (available for 4-12 persons).
Tour with light tea: $12 per person
Tour with high tea: $25 per person.
High tea without tour: $20 per person.
$5-$25; free children ages 12 and under. House Tours: 10:30 a.m. every Wednesday and second Saturday of each month; 2 p.m. the second Sunday or each month. 672 11th St., Oakland. (510) 444-2187, www.pardeehome.org.<
SAN LEANDRO HISTORY MUSEUM AND ART GALLERY ongoing. The museum showcases local and regional history and serves as a centerpiece for community cultural activity. There are exhibits on Ohlone settlements, farms of early settlers, and contributions of Portuguese and other immigrants. There will also be exhibits of the city's agricultural past and the industrial development of the 19th century. "Yema/Po Archeological Site at Lake Chabot," ongoing. An exhibit highlighting artifacts uncovered from a work camp of Chinese laborers, featuring photomurals, cutouts and historical photographs.
Free. Thursday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 320 West Estudillo Ave., San Leandro. (510) 577-3990, www.ci.sanleandro. ca.us/sllibrarymuseum.html.<
SHADELANDS RANCH HISTORICAL MUSEUM Built by Walnut Creek pioneer Hiram Penniman, this 1903 redwood-framed house is a showcase for numerous historical artifacts, many of which belonged to the Pennimans. It also houses a rich archive of Contra Costa and Walnut Creek history in its collections of old newspapers, photographs and government records.$1-$3; free-children under age 6. Wednesday and Sunday, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.; Closed in January. 2660 Ygnacio Valley Road, Walnut Creek. (925) 935-7871, www.ci.walnut-creek.ca.us.<
SMITH MUSEUM OF ANTHROPOLOGY AT CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, HAYWARD The museum houses significant collections of archaeological and ethnographic specimens from Africa, Asia and North America and small collections from Central and South America. The museum offers opportunities and materials for student research and internships in archaeology and ethnology.Free. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Meiklejohn Hall, Fourth Floor, 25800 Carlos Bee Blvd., Hayward. (510) 885-3104, (510) 885-7414, www.isis.csuhayward.edu/cesmith/acesmith.html.<
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY HEARST MUSEUM OF ANTHROPOLOGY ongoing. "Native California Cultures," ongoing. This is an exhibit of some 500 artifacts from the museum's California collections, the largest and most comprehensive collections in the world devoted to California Indian cultures. The exhibit includes a section about Ishi, the famous Indian who lived and worked with the museum, Yana tribal baskets and a 17-foot Yurok canoe carved from a single redwood.
"Recent Acquisitions," ongoing. The collection includes Yoruba masks and carvings from Africa, early-20th-century Taiwanese hand puppets, textiles from the Americas and 19th- and 20th-century Tibetan artifacts.
"From the Maker's Hand: Selections from the Permanent Collection," ongoing. This exhibit explores human ingenuity in the living and historical cultures of China, Africa, Egypt, Peru, North America and the Meditteranean.
$1-$4; free for children ages 12 and under; free to all on Thursdays. Wednesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Sunday, noon-4:30 p.m. 103 Kroeber Hall, Bancroft Way and College Avenue, Berkeley. (510) 643-7648, www.hearstmuseum.berkeley.edu.<
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY MUSEUM OF PALEONTOLOGY ongoing. "Tyrannosaurus Rex," ongoing. A 20-foot-tall, 40-foot-long replica of the fearsome dinosaur. The replica is made from casts of bones of the most complete T. Rex skeleton yet excavated. When unearthed in Montana, the bones were all lying in place with only a small piece of the tailbone missing.
"Pteranodon," ongoing. A suspended skeleton of a flying reptile with a wingspan of 22 to 23 feet. The Pteranodon lived at the same time as the dinosaurs.
"California Fossils Exhibit," ongoing. An exhibit of some of the fossils that have been excavated in California.
Free. During semester sessions, hours generally are: Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.-10 p.m.; Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday, 1 p.m.-10 p.m. Hours vary during summer and holidays. Lobby, 1101 Valley Life Sciences Building, #4780, University of California, Berkeley. (510) 642-1821, www.ucmp.berkeley.edu.<