We struck out last Saturday for an evening of adventure at the Shiele Museum’s Star Party. By the time we arrived, the clouds had rolled in and the receptionist (quite possibly the nicest woman in Gaston County) sadly informed us that the party was off. However, we could listen in on a telescope lecture and run around their Cowboy exhibit.
My 2-year old lasted about five minutes in the graduate-level course on light refraction. As the lecturer droned on, sweetie-pie discovered a secret exit at the back of the auditorium. My toddler then discovered he could make a loop down the stairs, much to his little delight. Our 8-year old was inexplicably attentive to the lecture, as were the handful of other ridiculously well behaved children. However, pee-wee has a zero-tolerance policy for people who take themselves too seriously, and the lecture was too good of an opportunity to pass up.
After the interminable lecture ended, we took advantage of the offer to check out Cowboy: Dust of the Trail. Who knew cowboys been around for more than 1,000 years and can be traced back to Ireland? Not me. The really wild part was that it was a Saturday night and we had the entire exhibit to our sole little selves, the way that God intended. The display was indeed a bit dry, and my daughter was freaked out by the life-like mannequins. But again, my older son who had apparently put on his good-boy jeans that morning, found it fascinating. We all had a good time posing for pictures in the jail and on a pony against the wide-open sky. In the end, an evening well spent.
The Shiele Museum of Natural History is located on Garrison Blvd. in Gaston. Admission is $6-$10. For more information, visit http://www.schielemuseum.org/.