April-June 2021 Exhibits & Events
Updated May 3, 2021
TRANSCONTINENTAL RAILROAD DISTANCE LEARNING ACTIVITY
Aligned with 4th-8th grade Common Core and History-Social Science State Content standards, this free activity explores the stories of the Transcontinental Railroad’s Chinese workers through videos from the California Museum’s signature exhibit “Gold Mountain: Chinese Californian Stories” and a virtual tour of the online exhibit “Making the Grade: California and the Transcontinental Railroad” by the California State Archives. The resource, combining first-hand accounts and primary sources, is available as both a downloadable, printable PDF and as a paperless, shareable Google Classroom assignment. For details or to download starting Mon., April 5, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/distance-ed.
CALIFORNIA MUSEUM LIVE: UPROOTED!
Experience life behind barbed wire in wartime California on a virtual tour of “Uprooted! Japanese Americans During WWII” at 11 a.m. on Sat., April 24, 2021. This Zoom-based program includes a 30-minute docent-led tour of the Museum’s long-term exhibit chronicling the forced removal and incarceration of Japanese Americans from 1942 to 1945, along with 15 minutes of Q&A. Free with advance registration by 5 p.m. on Fri., April 23. For more information or to register, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/ca-museum-live.
“INDOMITABLE: THE STORY OF TOMMY KONO” ONLINE EXHIBIT
Explore the life and legacy of legendary weightlifter Tommy Kono (1930-2016) in this all-new online exhibit presented in partnership with Google Arts and Culture for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. Through historic photographs, video clips and artifact images, the virtual presentation chronicles the journey of the Sacramento native Japanese American who began weightlifting while incarcerated at Tule Lake and went on to set world records in four weight classes, becoming one of the greatest Olympic weightlifters of all time. For more information, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/tommy-kono.
BIG DAY OF GIVING
Support the California Museum’s mission to educate and inspire visitors to make a mark on history during the Big Day of Giving on Thurs., May 6, 2021. Gifts are tax-deductible and may be made with a major credit card starting at $15. For more information or to schedule a donation, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/bdog.
CALIFORNIA MUSEUM REOPENING
The California Museum will reopen to the public on Saturday, May 8, 2021 with new health and safety protocols including advance contactless ticketing, socially distanced gallery routes and face mask requirements. Visitors welcomed back with interim summer hours Thursday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and admission prices (advance $7 or walk-up $8-10) to encourage contactless entry. For more information or to purchase advance tickets, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/covid-19.
CALIFORNIA FARMWORKERS DISTANCE LEARNING ACTIVITY
Aligned with 6th-12th grade Common Core and History-Social Science State Content standards, this activity gives students the opportunity to examine California farmworkers’ fight for equality and the activism of the UFW and co-founder Dolores Huerta from the online exhibits “Women Inspire: California Women Changing Our World” by the California Museum and “Farmworkers in the Land of Plenty” by the California State Archives. The resource, combining first-hand accounts and primary sources, is available as both a downloadable, printable PDF and as a paperless, shareable Google Classroom assignment. For details or to download starting Mon., May 10, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/distance-ed.
BLUE STAR MUSEUMS
5/16 – 9/5/21
A partnership between the National Endowment for the Arts and Blue Star Families, Blue Star Museums provides free admission to all active duty, National Guard and Reserve military personnel and up to 5 members of their family at the California Museum from Sun., May 16 (Armed Forces Day) through Sunday, Sept. 5, 2021, when a valid military ID is presented at time of admission. For details, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/bsm-2021.
CALIFORNIA CONVERSATIONS: SACRAMENTO’S JAPANTOWN
Revisit the stories of a local lost neighborhood during California Conversations: Sacramento’s Japantown on Thur., May 20, 2021, at 5:30 p.m. Presented in recognition of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, this Zoom-based event features a panel discussion with contributors to the Museum’s online exhibits “Kokoro: The Story of Sacramento’s Lost Japantown” and “Indomitable: The Story of Tommy Kono,” including historians Kevin Wildie, John Fair and William Burg and former residents Rev. Laverne Sasaki and Gloria Imagire. Free with advance registration by 5 p.m. on Wed., May 19 for up to 100 participants. For more information or to register, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/ca-conversations.
BANK OF AMERICA MUSEUMS ON US® FREE ADMISSION
6/5 & 6/6/21
Free admission for all current Bank of America®, Merrill Lynch® and U.S. Trust® cardholders through Museums On Us® with valid photo ID. For more information, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/mou-2021.
CALIFORNIA MUSEUM LIVE: UNITY CENTER VIRTUAL EVENT
Find inspiration in California’s diverse history, arts and culture on a virtual tour of the Unity Center at 11 a.m. on Sat., June 26, 2021. This Zoom-based program includes a 30-minute docent-led tour of the Museum’s signature exhibit highlighting the state’s leaders and achievements in civil rights, social justice and activism, along with 15 minutes of Q&A. Free with advance registration by 5 p.m. on Fri., June 25. For more information or to register, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/ca-museum-live.
A traveling exhibit developed by Exhibit Envoy and photographer Jonas Kulikauskas, “Yosemite People” chronicles the people who live, work and visit Yosemite National Park in recognition of the historic site’s 130th anniversary. The temporary installation offers visitors a unique look at the complex and contradictory relationships between the park’s natural wonders and its inhabitants. For more information or to view selected images, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/yosemite-people.
CALIFORNIA TIME TRAVELER CAMP
6/28 – 7/2/21
Young adventurers are invited to explore over 150 years of history, arts and culture in the California Time Traveler Camp. Ideal for kids ages 6 to 11, this week-long day camp offers engaging learning experiences as participants travel back in time to some of the state’s significant eras. A combination of exhibit tours, excursions to nearby sites and hands-on activities from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., daily itineraries begin on Monday in modern California and end on Friday during the Gold Rush over 150 years ago. Admission: $275 per time-traveler. The program is limited to a maximum of 15 participants following rigorous COVID-19 protocols under state and county guidelines. For details on protocols or to book a passage, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/time-traveler.
CONTINUING VIRTUAL PROGRAMS:
“CALIFORNIA’S JOURNEY” VIRTUAL TOUR
Ideal for 3rd-9th grade distance learning classes, the “California’s Journey” Virtual Tour brings the experience of a Museum visit to students at home through a Zoom session featuring a video tour and digital artifact kit, followed by a docent-led presentation of Gold Rush stories from a variety of perspectives and materials for a post-visit oral history project. Participants explore how people came to California and shaped the modern state, from the history of Native peoples and Gold Rushers to the transcontinental railroad builders, tech-boomers and beyond. Free for California Title 1 schools during distance learning or $75 flat fee for up to 100 participants. For more information or to book, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/ca-journey or call (916) 654-1729.
DISTANCE LEARNING ACTIVITIES
This online program launched for the 2020-21 school year features free education materials aligned with K-12 Common Core and California State Content standards to further students’ learning outside of the Museum. Resources cover a wide range of California history, arts and culture topics and are available as downloadable, printable PDFs and as paperless, shareable Google Classroom assignments. For more information or to access available materials, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/distance-ed.
“FIGHT FOR THE RIGHT: 100 YEARS OF WOMEN VOTING” ONLINE
Featuring artifacts, historic photographs and interactive activities, this online exhibit chronicles women’s struggle for the right to the vote from the mid-19th century to the ratification of the 19th Amendment on Aug. 26, 1920, drawing parallels to the ongoing fight for women’s equality that continues today. Developed in collaboration with First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom, who served as California’s representative on the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commission, the project launched on Aug. 26. 2020, marking the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment’s ratification. For details or to view, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/womens-vote-100-online.
GIRL SCOUTS™ CELEBRATE WOMEN PATCH TOUR ONLINE
This program offers Girl Scouts™ an opportunity to earn a “Celebrate Women” patch while learning about the contributions of California women to history through a self-guided virtual tour of the online exhibit “Women Inspire: California Women Changing Our World.” Program includes an introductory video, a guided activity scalable for troop levels ranging from Daisy to Ambassador and an official “Celebrate Women” patch for each participant. Flat fee of $25 for up to 15 participants and $2 for each additional participant. For more information or to book, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/celebrate-women-patch-tour or call (916) 654-1729.
“VICE PRESIDENT KAMALA HARRIS: FIRST, BUT NOT LAST” ONLINE
Explore the life and career of Vice President Kamala Harris in this new online exhibit launched on the eve of her historic inauguration as the United States’ first woman, first African American and first Indian American Vice President. Developed in partnership with the California State Archives, the virtual presentation documents the rise of the California native from her childhood in Oakland growing up as the daughter of immigrants to becoming the highest-ranking female elected official in American history. For more information or to view, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/kamala.
“KOKORO: THE STORY OF SACRAMENTO’S LOST JAPANTOWN” ONLINE
Explore the experiences of local Japanese Americans in the early 20th century in the online version of “Kokoro: The Story of Sacramento’s Lost Japantown.” Featuring photographs from the private collections of community members, the exhibit documents the memories of a once-thriving community devastated first by forced removal during WWII and again by redevelopment in the 1960s. Developed in partnership with former residents of the lost neighborhood and author of “Sacramento’s Historic Japantown” Kevin Wildie, “Kokoro” was originally presented as an onsite exhibit in 2017 to commemorate the 75th anniversary of Executive Order 9066, the presidential decree that led to the unconstitutional incarceration of 120,000 Japanese Americans. For more information or to view, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/kokoro.
UNITY CENTER VIRTUAL FIELD TRIP TOUR
Designed to increase student engagement in democracy, the Unity Center Virtual Field Trip Tour is a new program exploring the history of activism in California for distance learning students. Program includes a Unity Center video tour and a downloadable digital artifact kit, followed by an interactive Zoom session featuring a docent-led presentation and resources for a post-tour research project. Free for California Title 1 schools during distance learning or $75 flat fee for up to 100 participants. Aligned with 3rd-12th grade History-Social Science, Common Core ELA, Civics outcomes and Ethnic Studies framework. For more information or to book, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/unity-center-virtual-tour or call (916) 654-1729.
“WOMEN INSPIRE: CALIFORNIA WOMEN CHANGING OUR WORLD” ONLINE
Discover the stories of selected Golden State women from the 1700s to the present who inspire change and reflection on the ongoing struggle for equality in the online version of “Women Inspire: California Women Changing Our World.” Developed in collaboration with California First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom, the online Google Arts and Culture project launched August 18, 2020—100 years to the day Tennessee became the 36th and final state to ratify the amendment granting the women’s vote. For more information or to view, go to https://www.californiamuseum.org/wi-online.
CONTINUING TEMPORARY EXHIBIT:
“FIGHT FOR THE RIGHT: 100 YEARS OF WOMEN VOTING”
6/28 – 7/2/21
Featuring artifacts, historic photographs and interactive activities, this online exhibit chronicles women’s struggle for the right to the vote from the mid-19th century to the ratification of the 19th Amendment on Aug. 26, 1920, drawing parallels to the ongoing fight for women’s equality that continues today. Developed in collaboration with First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom, who served as California’s representative on the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commission, the project launched on Aug. 26. 2020, marking the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment’s ratification. For details or to view, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/fight-right.
ONGOING SIGNATURE EXHIBITS:
“CALIFORNIA INDIANS: THE FIRST PEOPLE”
Initially developed under the direction of a Native Advisory Council in 2011, “California Indians: The First People” is the only exhibit of its kind in the state to present the unique contributions of California’s Native Peoples in their own voice. Through artifacts, original art, oral histories and an interactive language kiosk, the exhibit chronicles the histories and cultural legacies of over 100 tribes. Highlights include the Chipped Stone Bear, California’s official prehistoric artifact; baskets woven by Native artists; a fur cape owned by Ishi; and more. For details, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/california-indians.
“CALIFORNIA MISSIONS: A JOURNEY ALONG THE EL CAMINO REAL”
Designed to correspond with State standards for 4th grade students, this exhibit includes rare artifacts from Missions across the state, such as iron tools handmade at Mission Santa Barbara, a marriage registry document written by Father Junípero Serra, an 1893 painting of Mission San Luis Rey on an original tile from that mission and more. In addition, oral history brings this pivotal chapter of history into the present through the modern perspective of Andrew A. Galvan, the first Native curator of Mission Dolores in San Francisco. For details, visit http://www.californiamuseum.org/california-missions.
“HEALTH HAPPENS HERE”
Learn how and why your zip code determines how long and how well you live in the multimedia exhibit “Health Happens Here.” Discover what Californians are doing to build health in communities across the state in this interactive journey through all the places and all the ways health happens in California. Through a series of high-tech games and interactive stations, visitors explore key factors that affect health beyond traditional diet and exercise while earning points that can be donated to 1 of 10 charities to make health happen for all Californians. Winner of the American Alliance of Museum’s “Excellence In Exhibition” award, the exhibit’s games are also available on a micro-website at http://www.healthhappensinca.org.
“GOLD MOUNTAIN: CHINESE CALIFORNIAN STORIES”
Discover the overlooked but significant history and contributions of Chinese Californians from the Gold Rush to the present in “Gold Mountain: Chinese California Stories.” This ongoing exhibit explores the history of Chinese immigrants who came to California in search of a better life and helped build the modern state while triumphing over racism and other obstacles with ingenuity and perseverance. In their stories, visitors will see the contributions Chinese Americans have made to our state’s economy, governance, and culture. For details, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/gold-mountain.
UNITY CENTER AT CALIFORNIA MUSEUM
Initiated in 1999 in response to a series of Northern California hate crimes, the Unity Center at the California Museum is an all-new installation celebrating the state’s diverse people, customs and cultures. Featuring multimedia exhibits exploring significant chapters of California’s civil rights history and a state-of-the-art classroom, the interactive 4,000 sq. ft. gallery encourages visitors to find common ground while embracing their own individuality. Through advocacy tools and engaging educational programs, visitors are empowered to be Unity Activists, exercising their rights and standing up for the rights of others – regardless of belief, background, identity or gender. For details, visit http://www.californiamuseum.org/unity-center.
“UPROOTED! JAPANESE AMERICANS DURING WWII”
Featuring members of the Sacramento Japanese American community, this exhibit presents the history of immigration and mass incarceration during World War II, as well as the successful fight for redress for the loss of constitutional rights. Featuring replica barracks and guard tower, the display includes rare artifacts along with a video introduction by George Takei, an interactive map of the incarceration sites and oral history video kiosks featuring the personal experiences of formerly incarcerated Japanese Americans from Northern California. For details, visit http://www.californiamuseum.org/uprooted-japanese-americans-during-wwii.
“WOMEN INSPIRE: CALIFORNIA WOMEN CHANGING OUR WORLD”
Developed in collaboration with California First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom and a statewide advisory council of historians, this all-new long-term signature exhibit features the stories of Golden State women from the 1700s to the present who inspire change and reflection on the ongoing struggle for equality. For more information, visit https://www.californiamuseum.org/women-inspire.
ABOUT CALIFORNIA MUSEUM
The California Museum educates visitors on California’s rich history, its diversity and its unique influence on ideas, innovation, art and culture. Open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and closed Monday through Wednesday, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. Admission: $7-10. Learn more at https://www.californiamuseum.org.
Press images and interviews available by advance request. During COVID-19, onsite media tours must be scheduled a minimum of 48 hours in advance. For assistance, please submit a media inquiry.