Fun & Weird

Great Alaska Outhouse Experience & More at the Fairbanks Museum

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You can definitely see and hear some unexpected things at the Museum of the North in Fairbanks, AK.

When I was evaluating my options for site-seeing in Fairbanks the Museum of the North kept coming up as one of the top options. So I got myself to the University of Alaska campus on the hill, paid the $12 admission fee, and set out.

Unfortunately the movie theater was out of order that day because $5 for unlimited viewing of their three movies — Dynamic Auroras, Expedition Alaska: Dinosaurs, and Arctic Currents: A Year in the Life of the Bowhead Whale — actually seemed right up my alley.

I made my way to the main Fairbanks museum exhibition, passing along the way a really cool and really giant polished jade boulder. I want one for my house!

Fairbanks Museum of the North jade boulder

As you enter the exhibit, Otto, the grizzly bear greets you. 🙂

Fairbanks Museum of the North Otto & Keri

Growing up, my parents took me to many natural history museums and I was always enthralled with the taxidermy of those in the west. So as soon as I saw Otto I knew I’d enjoy it!

Acclimated to modern museum layouts I was initially thrown off a little, The main exhibit area was laid out by regions of Alaska (very cool) and also surprisingly small given the size of the building.

Fairbanks Museum of the North Alaska regions

And packed with information. The walls are filled with text descriptions, facts, quotes, and stories. It’s almost overwhelming but definitely interesting.

Among the many displays that caught my eye…

The real-to-life bird display featuring plenty of fake bird droppings a sea gull that just caught a luckless chick.

Fairbanks Museum of the North predatory seagull

The mummified head and shoulder of baby mammoth.

Fairbanks Museum of the North mammoth calf

Blue Babe, the mummified bison carcass that turned blueish from the soil.

Fairbanks Museum of the North Blue Babe Bison

Lots of gold nugget examples.

Fairbanks Museum of the North gold nuggets

An old fashioned high school diploma.

Fairbanks Museum of the North moose hide diploma

And one of the highlights, and a theme on this trip, were the many stories about the lives of Alaska pioneers.

Fairbanks Museum of the North pioneer profiles

I took a break from reading to head up to the second floor which displayed works from past and current Alaskan artists. And it was there I discovered “The Place Where You Go To Listen”. A room whose sights and sounds are based on the movements of the earth.

The place where you go to listen light panels museum of the north fairbanks ak

Also on the second floor is the native art exhibit. And in case you’re a true art lover, they have camp chairs so you can take your time taking in the artwork.

Fairbanks Museum of the North native art camp chairs

There were some amazing pieces, not the least of which was the Great Alaskan Outhouse Experience.

Fairbanks Museum of the North native art

Fairbanks Museum of the North Great Alaska Outhouse Experience Description

 

And you are encouraged to go in!

Fairbanks Museum of the North Great Alaskan Outhouse Experience

Fairbanks Museum of the North Great Alaskan Outhouse Experience Interior On the way out I stopped at the Dinosaur exhibit (enter through the gift shop) and that was interesting but probably the least impressive exhibit they had.

Fairbanks Museum of the North Dinosaur Fossil Map

More from this trip:

Suite Life at Sheraton Anchorage
Pancakes at Night & Other Fun at the Holiday Inn Express Fairbanks
I missed the Salmon and the Man in the Bear Suit…
The Place Where You Go to Listen
Denali: To the End of the Road and Back

 

Full Disclosure: I may receive affiliate credit from links in this post or on this site which will help fund my travels. Thank you for your support!

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Living for the little (and big things) that make life so fun, especially mistake deals and crazy last minute weekend mileage runs across the world. www.twitter.com/klatravel

1 Comment

  1. PH

    August 31, 2015 at 5:34 am

    I’m up in Fairbanks about once a year and I enjoy stopping by the Museum of the North every few years. I’m guessing the outhouse exhibit is relatively new, that’s exactly the kind of quirky exhibit that I love to find. If you head back up there, I recommend Chena Hot Springs (stop by the Trans-Alaska Pipeline exhibit just off the highway on the way to Chena), the Cookie Jar Restaurant, and the Alaska Heritage House (bed & breakfast).

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