Home Articles River of Time Museum Reopens to Families After Big Renovation

River of Time Museum Reopens to Families After Big Renovation

By Amy Wolff

Looking for something fun to do with the family this Spring Break? Visit the River of Time Museum and Exploration Center in beautiful Fountain Hills for new hands-on exhibits and art installations from local creators.

Like most businesses, the River of Time Museum was forced to close because of COVID-19 but the nonprofit organization used the time to embark on a significant remodeling project. The nearly $100,000 renovation, made possible thanks to grants and support from donors, helped revitalize the museum, which now features updated interior space, interactive displays, more interpretive elements and expanded stories about the area’s earliest inhabitants.

The River of Time Museum celebrates the Lower Verde Valley River region and the people who inhabited what is now Fountain Hills and the surrounding communities hundreds of years ago. As visitors journey through the museum, they encounter exhibits that showcase the way desert dwellers – from the ancient Hohokam and the Yavapai to early ranchers and modern-day settlers – found ways to create an oasis in the desert.

With the recent remodel, the museum introduced several pre-human residents including Arizona’s official dinosaur, Sonorasaurus, a previously unknown brachiosaurid sauropoda, and a bat cave exhibit featuring local bats and research currently being conducted by the local McDowell Sonoran Conservancy field team. Partnerships with neighboring organizations like these will allow for up-to-date and ever- changing information on research to be incorporated in future exhibits.

Interactive displays at the River of Time Museum include a one-of-a-kind, augmented reality sand table. The tactile exhibit can be manipulated to create topographic representations of mountains, streams and various weather patterns. Visitors can even play archaeologist, digging in the sand to uncover dinosaur bones.

The River of Time Museum is located at 12901 N. La Montana Blvd. in Fountain Hills, next to the local library and magnificent sculpture garden with a view of the town’s famous fountain. It is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors 65+, and $7 for children 6-18, veterans and health care workers. Members, Fountain Hills students with ID and children under five are admitted free. For more information about special events, visit https://www.riveroftime.museum/

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