The Natural History Museum of Santa Maria
We all get involved in things that call to some inner need within us right? Or is it just me? I never thought I would volunteer as much time as I am to a non profit organization. But here I am practically volunteering full time hours to this amazing little hole in the wall in the center of Santa Maria, CA. The Natural History Museum of Santa Maria is my home away from home.
At over 140 years old it’s one of the oldest homes in this city. The Hart House as it’s known, was built in 1877. It was established in 1996 as a non profit in memory of a native Santa Marian Samuel J Perry. The dream of our founding members Soma Baldwin, Esq, Larry Bell CPA, and Virginia Perry Souza, was to provide science & natural history enrichment for our public schools with live hands on experiences for our kids.
The Natural History Museum offers an assortment of collections! Starting with the purchase of a T-rex skull when the doors of the Hart House first opened as the Natural History Museum in 1999. To this day the museum has grown with various displays and educational programs. Through the years we’ve hosted countless school tours, community events, public installations, traveling exhibits, hands on displays and a focus on local habitat. These are just a few of many samplings of what’s been provided to our community by this tiny museum.
Always free of charge and open to the public, it runs entirely on generous contributions of volunteers, donations, sponsorship, gifts, fundraising events and grants.
The museums mission
“It is our Mission to inspire and educate our community through regional collections and tot promote the discovery and appreciation of the natural world.”
This totally speaks to me as a nature lover and promoter of All Things Green Living.
I’m proud to be a member of the executive board of directors for this fine little establishment. I volunteer my time by organizing fundraising events. Promoting such events and getting creative with designing the posters and fliers. We host at least 4 main events each year. Starting with Earth Day in April, the Summer Solstice Festival in June. A Fall event in either October or November and the Holiday Night at the Natural History Museum or Winter Solstice Festival in December.
I have a blast working with my fellow board members! I have to be honest though sometimes it can get a bit frustrating as it can be with any board. Because this is a volunteer job for all of us! We all have full time jobs or other obligations. But we make it work because we are all passionate over this wonderful little gem in the middle of our city. That’s a bond we all share so we enjoy spending this time together.
Seeing the smiles on kids faces, knowing that we are enriching so many lives with the programs and events we put on is worth every bit of effort! I get a great sense of satisfaction just seeing the results of our efforts in everyone’s happy faces. There is nothing more rewarding then the ability to keep the lights on in this tiny little hole in the wall / the Natural History Museum right in the middle of our city.
If you would be interested in learning more about our little museum in the heart of Santa Maria.
I’d encourage you to stop by and visit us!
We’re located at:
412 S. McClelland St. Santa Maria 93456
email me: [email protected]