Earth scientists from UALR will celebrate National Fossil Day with an open house from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, on the first floor of the Science Lab Building, where the public can view actual fossils as well as casts of fossils from the university’s collection and from other institutional collections.
Joe Daniel, a paleontologist and an alumnus of the UALR geology program, said National Fossil Day momentos – pins, postcards, posters, magnets, and other items – will be given away. UALR Faculty and students will be present to answer questions.
“In addition to the fossils already on display, we will open the classrooms and have on display several other fossils, both from our collections and from other participating institutions, such as the Arkansas Geological Survey,” Daniel said. “The event is open to the public and all ages are welcome. People are welcome to bring any fossils they would like identified that they can compare to those on display. Over 500 million years of Arkansas’s history will be on display.”
The National Park Service and the American Geological Institute are partnering to host the first National Fossil Day during Earth Science Week. National Fossil Day is a celebration organized to promote public awareness and stewardship of fossils, as well as to foster a greater appreciation of their scientific and educational value.
Fossils discovered on the nation’s public lands preserve ancient life from all major eras of Earth’s history, and from every major group of animal or plant. In the national parks, for example, fossils range from primitive algae found high in the mountains of Glacier National Park, Montana, to the remains of ice-age animals found in caves at Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona. Public lands provide visitors with opportunities to interpret a fossil’s ecological context by observing fossils in the same place those animals and plants lived millions of years ago.
For more information, contact Dr. Jeff Connelly, Chair of UALR’s Department of Earth Science, at 501-569-3546 or firstname.lastname@example.org.