This is an archived article that was published on in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The state's premier museum has reordered its name to the Natural History Museum of Utah as it puts the finishing touches on its new 163,000-square-foot home at the mouth of Red Butte Canyon in advance of its Nov. 17 dedication.

The museum is still clearing out of its old home in the historic Thomas building on the University of Utah's Presidents Circle, installing exhibits and transferring collections to the copper-clad Rio Tinto Center, which is seeking gold certification under LEED standards for environmentally sound construction. A gala event, open to the public, will follow the dedication.

The museum officially opens on Friday, Nov. 18, and won't charge admission that day. Adult admission will be $9. The museum is selling charter memberships, which give cardholders access to special events, discounts at the cafe operated by The Point, and the store, and free admission to 300 museums and science centers around the world. Those who purchase memberships before Oct. 28 will get a 10 percent discount and current members can renew at the old price.

Meanwhile, museum officials are looking to recruit dozens of volunteers to interface with the public as gallery interpreters, visitor service representatives and guides. For more information, go to

Brian Maffly