Have you ever wished a popular Smithsonian exhibit could come to you rather than the other way around? Or that it could be made available to enthusiastic audiences in their own home towns? Thanks to an exciting collaboration initiated by the American Veterinary Medical Association and joined by the Smithsonian institution, American Veterinary Medical Foundation, and Zoetis, Animal Connections: Our Journey Together debuted this summer. Housed in a mini-museum inside an expandable18-wheeler, the exhibit introduces visitors of all ages to the human-animal bond. Whether you’re an aspiring veterinarian, an animal lover, or a health care professional, you and your family will find something to capture your interest on the truck as well as in the myriad public programs that will accompany each stop.
Visitors are offered a variety of interactive ways to learn about the important roles that animals – small and large, domestic and wild – play in our society and in our lives. Exhibit sections focus on animals in the home, on the farm, at the zoo, and in the wild. A virtual veterinary clinic at the center provides opportunities to develop your diagnostic skills in the role of a veterinarian.
The free mobile museum made its debut in Chicago at the AVMA’s 150th anniversary convention at McCormick Place, followed by a public debut on the Museum Campus near the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago and a series of Chicago Park District sites. The exhibit will also travel to New York City and Washington, D.C. this year, with a nationwide tour slated to begin in 2014. Check back with us often to keep track of the tour schedule, and be sure to share the itinerary with your friends around the country so they don’t miss it, either. You can also get important exhibit updates and information on Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.
Additional resources: AnimalConnections.comZoetis' pages about the exhibitARKive.org (for fun images and videos of animals)