Update as of July 14, 2020:
The Cook Museum of Natural Science reopened to the general public on Wednesday, July 8, 2020. This was preceded by two Member-Only Days on July 6-7.
To ensure the safety of the Museum’s visitors and staff:
- The Museum will continue to use timed-entry ticketing, but with a lower capacity limit and additional queue lines.
- Employees will be wearing face masks and practicing social distancing.
- Per the City of Decatur ordinance, the wearing of face masks and practicing social distancing is required (with some specific exceptions) for visitors to the Museum.
- The number of hand sanitizing stations throughout the Museum have been increased.
- Additional staff will be performing increased cleaning and sanitizing of high-touch area throughout the Museum.
- Temporarily, a number of the hands-on interactives in the Exhibits have been functionally modified to decrease the need to touch, with a limited number taken offline.
“We are thrilled to be back in the business of engaging, exciting, and educating our visitors. The phased reopening, beginning with Nature’s Table and The Museum Store and culminating with our Exhibits now, provided the best opportunity for us to provide the public with an experience that is both safe and amazing,” said Executive Director Scott Mayo. “The Museum was hard at work during the closure preparing new elements to some of the Exhibits, educational opportunities, and programming. It is now time to share those enhancements!”
Starting July 8, the hours of operation for all areas of the Museum, including the Exhibits, will be Monday through Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Saturday 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, and Sunday Noon to 5:00 pm.
Membership Update as of July 14, 2020:
In response to the unexpected closure of the Museum during the COVID-19 shutdown, all active Memberships purchased from May 2019 through March 2020 have been extended 4 months beyond their original renewal date. (Example: If your Membership renewal date was set for the end of August 2020, it will now be due for renewal at the end of December 2020 instead.)
The Museum will continue to take all reasonable precautions in the public and private spaces of the Museum, as your well-being and the well-being of our staff and volunteers is of paramount importance to us. With many hundreds of daily visitors to the Cook Museum we will use our best efforts to provide a safe and sanitary experience for all visitors, but we can make no guarantee as to the absolute absence of COVID-19 at the facility.
In addition to our regular thorough cleaning routine, we will continue increased cleaning measures in heavily trafficked areas such as bathrooms, elevators, railings, doorknobs, door handles, hand railings, the admissions desks, café counters and tables and other high-touch parts of the Exhibits. Hand sanitizer dispensers will continue to be readily available throughout the building and inside the Exhibits, and we will continue to increase the number of hand sanitizer dispensers in high-trafficked areas.
If you have any questions about group reservations you have made at the Museum in relation to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), please contact our Group Sales Department at 256-898-6312.