Gene and I have enjoyed many long weekend trips to Casper, Wyoming, and enjoy this little city a lot. Quite often we are there during the hotter time of the year or the cooler time of the year. For some reason, it just seems to have worked out that way. Thus, we have tried to do some museums and such when it is really hot out. If we are not at a museum, we are often at Frontier Brewing, or Backwards Distillery, lol. Hey, you have to support the locals, right? In all seriousness, we have enjoyed a few outside attractions such as the amazing Ayres Natural Bridge, and the beautiful waterfalls at Rotary Park. However today, I wanted to share a little about some of the best Casper museums in and around Casper, Wyoming. These are in no particular order:
Fort Casper Museum and Historic Site
Fort Caspar is a fully reconstructed frontier outpost named after Lieutenant Caspar Collins. Lieutenant Collins was killed in the 1865 Battle of Platte Bridge Station against the Lakota and Cheyenne, but his memories still live on in the city of Casper. Featuring reconstructed buildings, including a stockade and a replica of the Mormon ferry that operated in Casper from 1847 to 1849, the fort draws large numbers of visitors every year Inside the Interpretive Center you can walk through Casper’s first 100 years with objects from the museum’s collection and learn about the community’s history through interactive videos. Many say this is the first of the Casper museums you should visit as it will give you a better sense of the area.
4001 Fort Caspar Road, Casper, WY 82604
Wyoming Veterans Memorial Museum
The Wyoming Veterans Memorial Museum preserves and shares the memory and legacy of Wyoming’s veterans. The Veterans Museum exhibits highlight individual service stories, while the “Wings of Freedom” exhibit explores Casper Army Air Base’s history and impact. Their collection of military history and reference books are available to the public.
3740 Jourgensen Ave., Casper, WY 82601
Tate Geological Museum
One of the best Casper museums is the Tate Geological Museum. It houses a collection of over 3,000 fossil and mineral specimens including dinosaurs and Dee the Mammoth, an 11,600-year-old Columbian Mammoth who lived in the American West during the Pleistocene, or Ice Age. One thing worth mentioning is the life-sized bronze piece of a juvenile T. Rex right outside the museum. Make sure to stop by and see that even if you don’t have time to take in the museum. Pretty cool to see.
125 College Drive, Casper, WY 82601
National Historic Trails Interpretive Center
I like checking out interpretive museums and this one is cool. It commemorates Native American history, early explorers, and the travel corridor of the Oregon, Mormon, California, and Pony Express trails. You will also learn about the Bridger and Bozeman trails through hands-on, interactive exhibits in seven galleries and an 18-minute multi-media program. The best part is that there is no fee to visit the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center. Make sure to check it out while in the Casper area.
1501 N Poplar St, Casper, WY 82601
Nicolaysen Art Museum and Discovery Center
The Nicolaysen Art Museum features contemporary art from the central Rockies and high plains. They will entertain you with more than 25,000 square feet of galleries, classrooms, and the Discovery Center (a hands-on art studio), the Nicolaysen Art Museum celebrates the visual arts and learning. If you plan it right, you may be able to catch an auction, show, or festival. Either way, it is fun to simply wander through the current awe-inspiring displays.
400 E. Collins Drive, Casper, WY 82601
The view of the stars in the wide-open Wyoming sky is unparalleled, so a classic Casper activity is to head outside, lie down on a blanket, and star gaze. But there is another way (which is always a great option on snowy days). The Casper Planetarium offers regular programs about the night sky to help you expand your universe, featuring the cutting-edge Mediaglobe-II system, which allows for a full-dome presentation similar to an IMAX theatre. We have not done this one, but it looks sounds like a great place to visit on a future trip.
904 N. Poplar St., Casper, WY 82601
Looking for a little more Casper history? If so, make your way to the M.L. Bishop Museum. It is Casper’s only house museum and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places because of its association with the development of Casper. Visitors can learn the unique history of Casper, Natrona County, and Wyoming through the lens of a local family who lived, laughed and labored in this historic home for more than 100 years.
818 E. 2nd St., Casper, WY 82601
The Science Zone
One of my nieces would love this place. They have hairy tarantulas, bearded dragons, a Bubble Zone, and countless rotating exhibits which make The Science Zone a must for families visiting Casper. Per their site, this is the ultimate playground with an educational twist. Kids can learn about strange and exotic animals in the Zoo Zone where pythons, iguanas, Russian tortoises, and chinchillas live side by side. See yourself through a different perspective in the Reflection Zone. Future engineers of the world can build and create original works with blocks, toys, and materials in the Engineering Zone. While this is a guaranteed great time for kids, parents and grandparents shouldn’t be afraid to jump in and get their hands dirty.
222 E Collins Drive, Casper, WY 82601
There you have it, a list of some of the most interesting a fun Casper museums. We have done a few, but not all. They will definitely stay on our list until we see them all. Since Casper is only about 4 hours away, we usually get out there once a year or so. Have you been to any of these museums? If so, drop me a line and let me know what you think. Also let me know of any I need to add to our to-do list, lol. Happy travels.
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