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ETSU, museum prepare to celebrate annual Darwin Day events

Posted on Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 12:59 pm

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The East Tennessee State University and General Shale Brick Natural History Museum and Visitor Center at the Gray Fossil Site will hold its annual Darwin Day celebration Saturday, Feb. 9.

 General admission on the day of the event, which will include several lectures as well as activities for children, will be half-price for adults and free for children.

 Darwin Day is an annual, international celebration of science held on or around Feb. 12 – the anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth in 1809.

 The mission of Darwin Day is to recognize the scientific accomplishments of the famous scientist and his description of evolution through natural selection, as well as to explain the far-reaching influence of evolutionary science.

 The ETSU Natural History Museum Darwin Day is dedicated to providing the public with scientific information based on empirical evidence regarding evolution and other topics in a thought-provoking and informal setting.

 The schedule for Darwin Day includes:

 —At 10 a.m.: “Darwin, the Bible, and Public Response to Evolution: From the Scopes Trial to the 21st Century,” presented by Dr. Joseph Baker of the ETSU Department of Sociology and Anthropology.

 —At 11:30 a.m.: “Lunchtime Evolution Discussion,” led by Dr. Blaine Schubert, Dr. Steven Wallace and Dr. Jim Mead of the ETSU Department of Geosciences and Natural History Museum.

 Topics will include human evolution, transitional forms, scientific creationism and intelligent design.

 —At 1:30 p.m.: “What’s in a Name? Fifty Fun Ways to Name a Fossil,” presented by Dr. Mick Whitelaw of the ETSU Department of Geosciences and Natural History Museum.

 —At 3 p.m.: “Stellar Evolution and Its Impact on the Evolution of Life,” presented by Dr. Don Luttermoser of the ETSU Department of Physics and Astronomy.

 Activities for children will be held throughout the day and will address topics including human evolution, why humans are primates, the process of natural selection and understanding geologic time evidence from fossil records.

 For more information, contact the ETSU Natural History Museum at 423-439-3659 or visit naturalhistorymuseum.