The Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum at Brigham Young University has re-opened after a two-year renovation project.
The museum first opened in 1978 to showcase Monte Bean’s collection of big game trophies from a lifetime of hunting. With an additional 30-thousand square feet, there’s lots of new exhibit space as well as room to house a number of research collection of animal specimens.
Larry St. Clair, the museum director, says there’s still a focus on taxidermy, with lions, giraffes, grizzly bears, wolves, moose, elk and many other specimens on display.
“Initially, virtually everything was his that was in the original building when we first opened," St. Clair told KUER. "But now, I think the only thing that’s in here now that’s a part of his original collection is the Bengal tiger out in the south hallway.”
The museum also features a gallery dedicated to Elder Boyd K. Packer, the president of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He’s created paintings and sculptures of wildlife for years. His son, Ken Packer, designed the exhibit.
“They range from wood carvings to crayon drawings as a youth to pencil sketches, inks," Packer says.
The museum plans a week-long open house starting on Saturday, June 7th. Admission is free.