Head out on an atmospheric after-dark adventure
After-dark openings return at 14 collections across Cambridge museums this half-term. Uncover buried secrets with members of your family and watch as children discover fascinating objects and start a journey of discovery. Twilight at the Museums is on 20 February, from 4.30pm to 7.30pm, with many of the venues close to each other – making multiple short trips a possibility on the night. Perhaps a trip through time, followed by a torch-lit treasure trail?
Or maybe a quest to find fluorescent creatures, before a mesmerising voyage through the stars? Shine a light on something new: an amazing fact, event or object – with free special trails and games, outdoor entertainment and pop-up food stalls to keep you going. For those in search of wonder, The Fitzwilliam Museum is collaborating with the Whipple Museum to create a starry night of light displays and astronomy.
For mystery and the strange, pop over to the Museum of Classical Archaeology for a spooky trail through darkened galleries and for real adventurers, the Museum of Cambridge hosts a hunt for treasure and promises secrets – if you can find them! As darkness falls, creatures of the night come out to play, so hunt for lurking rodents at the Museum of Technology, discover all kinds of nocturnal animals at the University Museum of Zoology and watch out for a giant spider, rumoured to be creeping around the light displays at Kettle’s Yard.
If exploring isn’t for you, treat your ears at the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, with a magical mystery tour featuring music from Beats of Polynesia, while the University Library displays its collection of manuscripts by candlelight, accompanied by authentic music from the time. There’s a chance to meet some of the great historical explorers at The Polar Museum, or look further into the past at the Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences. With a foot in the future, the Cambridge University Botanic Garden provides a quest for the long-term survival of some of the world’s most endangered plants.
Jenny Bull, University of Cambridge Museums engagement co-ordinator, says: “We hope children and parents join us for another action-packed evening exploring their local museums and collections after dark. We’re delighted that other collections across Cambridgeshire, as far as Wisbech & Fenland Museum, are joining in by hosting their own after-dark adventures on the same night again this year.”
Among the non-university bodies taking part are Cambridge Science Centre on Clifton Road and All Saints’ Church on Jesus Lane in Cambridge, the Cromwell Museum in Huntingdon, Newmarket’s National Horseracing Museum and the Norris Museum in St Ives. Pick up a copy of the Twilight What’s On leaflet or visit the website for full listings.