I honestly had no idea what the exhibit was about. Was it one giant Monster Fish, kind of like our own local Tahoe Tessie? I decided when we had family in town for the holidays, this would be the perfect activity to do with the grandparents and the kiddos.
Soon after entering the Monster Fish display, I was greeted by a very friendly museum docent. That is when my eyes were opened to why exactly this exhibit is so cool. Turns out Monster Fish is a National Geographic TV show hosted by aquatic ecologist Zeb Hogan, who is also a research assistant professor in the College of Science at the University of Nevada, Reno. Zeb Hogan has a singular focus for finding, studying and protecting the world’s largest freshwater fish, an effort to bring attention to the growingly fragile freshwater ecosystems and their endangered inhabitants. These megafish are defined as being six feet long and 200 pounds—or larger.
OK, I’ll admit right now that we don’t have cable at our house, so at this point in the visit, I was feeling like I had been living under a rock. As I talked to the docent, I learned that Zeb Hogan partnered with National Geographic to create the traveling exhibit of Monster Fish, and Zeb made sure that the first stop of this exhibit was right here in his home town of Reno, Nevada, where it will be on display until April 24, 2016.
Talk about the Biggest Little City. Little Ole’ Reno has a megafish mega-star living and working right here. This local insight put the display in a whole new context for me, and I was immediately fascinated. My kids were most intrigued by the life size sculptures of the monster fish, one of which even had a sign that said, Please touch”. Of course, they couldn’t resist.
About the Exhibit: Monster Fish: In Search of the Last River Giants features 6,000 square feet of stunning life-size sculptures, hands-on interactive exhibits, and evocative video installations that put you face-to-face with more than 20 species—each at least six feet long and weighing more than 200 pounds!
Educator’s Guide: Great for teachers planning field trips, home-schoolers, or even parents that just want to take the learning to a deeper level, download the educator’s guide before you go.
Social Science on January 30: Social Science is adults-only, brain building fun featuring intriguing science demos, clever art projects, a live DJ, and beer, wine, and sweet and savory bites from Whole Foods Market Reno. On January 30, there will be a special appearance by Zeb Hogan, and ladies, that means it comes with free eye candy!
Monster Fish Museum Overnights: Don’t let this big adventure get away! You and your group will spend the night amongst the giants from rivers and lakes around the globe. They have a bunch of dates available through April for this opportunity. Register now.
Teen Science Night on March 12: High schoolers will create rockets, candy, enjoy a live DJ and check out the Monster Fish. Embark on a global journey to storied river basins with Dr. Hogan on his quest to find, research, and protect these freshwater giants and the habitats they call home.