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74 candidates representing 32 countries became United States citizens during an official naturalization ceremony hosted by the Museum of Arts and Sciences on August 25, 2014. Approximately 10 of the candidates were residents of Macon-Bibb County while others traveled from other counties in the region. Ranging in age from 18 to 70 years old, the candidates took an oath of allegiance, recited the pledge of allegiance, sang the National Anthem, watched a recorded message from the President of the United States, and received their official naturalized citizenship certificates during the ceremony.

This momentous event – a significant occasion for the new American citizens – is part of the Museum’s strategic goal to serve a broader spectrum of residents in the region. “This is the first naturalization ceremony to be held at the Museum but we hope to serve as an annual host,” said Executive Director Susan Welsh. “We are able to accommodate as many as 75 candidates plus their family members in our Emily Bailey Walker Auditorium. This is a perfect use of our facility and we were honored to share this special occasion with so many families.”

Before and after the ceremony, the new citizens and their families had the opportunity to enjoy the Museum’s Discovery House and main galleries. The Macon Town Committee of the National Society of The Colonial Dames of America also helped welcome the new citizens and provided refreshments following the ceremony.

“Earlier this year, the Museum organized an exhibit about the Lost Mural of Ellis Island and developed educational programming about genealogy, citizenship, and immigration. Since then, we’ve wanted to host a naturalization ceremony,” said Welsh. “Generally, these ceremonies are held just once or twice a year in Macon. We are thrilled to be a newly approved site and we look forward to working with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ Atlanta Field Office to organize more ceremonies in the future.”

In 2012, the Museum participated in the American Alliance of Museums’ Museum Assessment Program on Community Involvement to better understand the needs and desires of the immediate community. Immediately, the findings of this assessment impacted the Museum’s educational programming, exhibition schedule, and marketing within the community. Specific goals were set to plan programs that would attract Spanish-speaking families, highlight cultural differences and strengths in the region, plus serve greater numbers of disadvantaged youth and adults with special needs.


Reptile Rendezvous This year’s Reptile Rendezvous promises to be one of the best 2014 “Fun Family Days” at the Museum of Arts and Sciences.

Reptile Rendezvous offers visitors an opportunity to meet the large collection of reptiles and amphibians that make the Mini-Zoo home.

It also gives everyone a chance to see other reptiles and amphibians that will be visiting the Museum especially for the day.

Reptile Rendezvous 2014 will feature:

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Discovery House "Light Box" With great fanfare during the “Grand Reopening” celebrations, the Museum of Arts and Sciences relaunched its distinctive Discovery House, the interactive museum for children, which offers new excitement for Kids of All Ages!

The area was closed for almost three months while new exhibits were being installed and existing stations updated.

Visitors are greeted at the entrance by Ziggy, the Museum’s 40 million-year-old whale fossil, and the “Gesturing Woman” by Viola Frey, scholar and artist known for her larger-than-life, colorfully glazed clay sculptures.

Once you’re past Ziggy, “Gesturing Woman,” and the Polar Bear in the main floor’s Parlor, a ride on the elevator opens up entirely new experiences.

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Scavenger hunts, nature walks, and hands-on activities are all part of the fun of 1st Saturdays at the Museum of Arts and Sciences.

Free admission for everyone to the Museum on the first Saturday of every month is generously sponsored by Medcen Foundation.

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A Call To Action!

Mayor Robert Reichert has proposed his FY2015 Macon-Bibb County budget, which eliminates all funding for the Museum of Arts and Sciences effective July 1, 2014. If approved by the Commissioners, entire sections of the Museum will be closed and major programs will be eliminated.

Show Your Support!
Tuesday, June 10, 2014 at 6:00 p.m.
Commission Chambers
Macon-Bibb County Government Center
700 Poplar Street • Macon, GA

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