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- The Houston Museum of Natural Science is one of the most visited and largest museums in Houston Texas. It is located in the Museum District of Houston Texas on the northern edge of Hermann Park next to the Houston Garden Center and across the street from the Miller Outdoor Theatre. The Museum of Natural Science stated mission is to preserve and advance the general knowledge of natural science; to enhance in individuals the knowledge and delight in natural science and related subjects; and to maintain and promote a museum of the first class. Houston Museum of Natural Science Features and Exhibits The museum houses the Burke Baker Planetarium, Wortham Giant Screen Theater, and the Cockrell Butterfly Center along with many other permanent and visiting exhibits. The Burke Baker Planetarium is the large domed structure on the southwest corner of the building. The planetarium is a large theater where visitors can view presentations, feature length films, and short videos on astronomy and space that are projected on to the inner curved surface of the dome. The Cockrell Butterfly Center features an amazing self paced walking tour of a fully stocked butterfly habitat. It features dozens of different species of live butterflies along with other live insects on display. According to the Houston Museum of Natural Science website, the museum “features a variety of permanent exhibit areas that examine astronomy, space science, Native American culture, paleontology, energy, chemistry, gems and minerals, seashells, Texas wildlife and so much more.” Some of the most impressive permanent exhibits are the Hall of Paleontology and the Hall of Ancient Egypt. The Morian Hall of Paleontology was opened in 2012. It is the largest permanent exhibit area of the museum with 230,000 square feet of exhibits featuring over 60 major fossil skeleton displays. The Hall of Agent Egypt opened in 2013 and displays many ancient Egyptian artifacts and recreations of Egyptian temples and mummies. History of the Houston Museum of Natural Science The Houston Museum of Natural History was founded in 1909 and has been financially supported by its members and benefactors ever since. The museum name was changed to the Houston Museum of Natural Science in 1960 and has experienced phenomenal growth in membership and attendance since the completion of its first permanent location adjacent to Hermann Park in 1969. The museum now has two satellite facilities, the George Observatory in Fort Bend County, which houses one of the largest telescopes in the country for public viewing, and the Houston Museum of Natural Science Sugar Land, which has exhibits of dinosaurs, mineralogy, exotic frogs and more. Houston Museum of Natural Science Membership Membership prices start as low as $60 for an individual and $95 for a family of four. Members receive unlimited free admission to the permanent exhibit halls. Members receive discounted admission to visiting exhibits, the Cockrell Butterfly Center, Wortham Giant Screen Theatre, and the Burke Baker Planetarium. Non-Members must pay admission to all general exhibits and purchase full price tickets to any premium exhibits. If you plan on visiting the Houston Museum of Natural Science more than once in any year, the price of a membership is well worth the cost.