Events and News

Events and News

The Gillespie has events year-round.  Monthly Science Cafés feature presentations on a range of environmental topics, and monthly Science Saturdays offer hands-on educational fun for scientists of all ages.

Check out our upcoming and past events at the museum!

Fall 2021

Fall semester events are still to be determined, and posted events are subject to change with evolving health guidelines.  (Join our mailing list to stay updated!)

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September 8 - Artist Talk

Cindy Leung, Multilingual Sculptor: 6 p.m. - 7 p.m. in the RELC (This talk will also be available to live-stream online; if you are interested in viewing the talk online, please RSVP to [email protected] to receive the Zoom link and details.) Safer Stetson protocols will be in place for the in-person event, including wearing masks and maintaining social distance.

The Gillespie Museum and Department of Creative Arts welcome Cindy Leung on Wednesday, September 8, for an artist talk to discuss her latest sculpture collection “A Borrowed Place on Borrowed Time.”  Cindy Leung is a multilingual sculpture artist who uses porcelain, silk and tea to create hybrid objects that explore identity through the interplay of linguistics and colonialism in a post-structuralist way.  From September 15 through December 3, some of Cindy’s ceramics pieces will be on display in the museum, in an exhibit entitled On the Road.  For more information on Cindy Leung and her unique art, see her website.

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September 15 - Opening Reception, with Tea

On the Road, by Cindy Leung: 4 p.m. - 5 p.m. in the museum

Join us for the opening of our newest Fall 2021 exhibit, On the Road, which will be on display in the museum from September 15-December 3. (The Gillespie is co-sponsoring this event with the Stetson Environmental Club and Hatter Harvest.) Cindy Leung is a multilingual sculpture artist who uses porcelain, silk and tea to create hybrid objects that explore identity through the interplay of linguistics and colonialism in a post-structuralist way. For more information on Cindy Leung and her unique art, see her website.

Safer Stetson protocols will be in place, including wearing masks and maintaining social distance.

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September 18 - Science Saturday

Smithsonian Museum Day: 10a.m. - noon

Meet Our Meteorites!  

On September 18, we host our first in-person Science Saturday in over a year. The Gillespie Museum is participating in the annual celebration of boundless curiosity with museums and cultural institutions across the country, sponsored by Smithsonian Museum Magazine. From 10 a.m. – noon, young scientists, and their grown-ups, are invited to see the Gillespie’s small collection of meteorites—the fragments of rocks and minerals that teach us about early conditions and processes in the solar system’s history. 

To ensure social distancing, we are asking for visitors to make reservations. We will have limited capacity to ensure distancing. Masks are required of all visitors. Make your reservation today!

You can find information about other area museums participating in Smithsonian Museum Day at Smithsonian Magazine.

Seed Collecting in the Volusia Sandhill

October 22 - Seed Collecting

Volusia Sandhill Ecosystem Seed Harvest: 3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m., outdoors adjacent to the museum

Come learn about the Volusia Sandhill urban reforestation project, and help us collect and sow seeds to contribute to its development.

Safer Stetson protocols will be in place.  Cultural Credit for Stetson Undergraduates

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October 30 - Science Saturday

Mostly Green Halloween: 10 a.m. - noon

Our 12th Annual Fall Fair!

Join us for activities and experiments, exploring the wonders and mysteries of the natural world. The public is invited to participate in this free, family-friendly Halloween-themed event, which is one of the museum’s Science Saturdays.  We welcome scientists of all ages (children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult), and costumes are encouraged!  

(We are asking for visitors to make reservations to ensure social distancing--RSVP to the museum at: [email protected] to reserve your spot!  Masks will be required of all visitors.)

Nicholas Pearson

Author Nicholas Pearson

November 3 - Crystal Structure & Ethnogeology

"Holy Gems and Healing Crystals: Lapidary Medicine from the Ancient World to Today"

An evening with author Nicholas Pearson, 6 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. in the museum (reservations required and attendance will be limited to ensure social distancing--RSVP to the museum at: [email protected] to reserve your spot today!) Safer Stetson protocols will be in place for this in-person event, including wearing masks and maintaining social distance.

From medieval talismans to modern-day healing crystals, humans have sought help and health from rocks and minerals. In his November 3 talk, Stetson University alumnus Nicholas Pearson will discuss mineral composition and crystal formation as they relate to the history of lapidary medicine, examining the archeological evidence of crystal use and the various roles that gemstones have played in cultures around the world.

Pearson has considered the relationship between humans and minerals for nearly three decades. He began teaching crystal workshops in high school, later learning mineral science at Stetson University, where he worked as a guide at the Gillespie Museum while pursuing an undergraduate degree in music. Nicholas combines his experience in earth science with his love of crystal legend and lore to bridge the realms of science, spirituality, and integrative medicine. Nicholas is a frequent guest on radio, podcasts, and television. Publications include The Seven Archetypal Stones: Their Spiritual Powers and Teachings (2016) and Crystal Basics: The Energetic, Healing, and Spiritual Power of 200 Gemstones (2020), both available through Simon and Schuster Digital Sales, Inc. He offers classes on crystal healing, Reiki, and flower essence therapy online and throughout the US.  Nicholas lives in Orlando, Florida.

Cultural Credit for Stetson Undergraduates

Spring 2021 (event recordings now available)

Science Café/Armchair Geology Speaker Series - videos

Wetlands Geology

Dr. Ben Tanner; Stetson undergraduates Cole Orsini, Casey Ramey

Episode 1: Armchair Geology - Wetlands, event recording (2/24/21)
"Coring 101: Everything the Armchair Geologist Needs to Know" with wetlands geologist Dr. Ben Tanner, and Stetson undergraduates Matt Fairchild, Cole Orsini, Casey Ramey, and Megan Vincent

Stetson University’s environmental geologist, Ben Tanner, joined by a team of his undergraduate researchers, presented the first in the Gillespie Museum’s spring 2021 Science Café series Armchair Geology. Their presentation explores the different ways that earth scientists extract sediments from the ground and provides a picture of all the fascinating information that these sediments can provide about past changes in Earth’s climate. Participants travel virtually with the presenters into the field to recover sediments from a number of challenging environments around the Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center in DeLand and learn about fascinating new findings the team has recovered from >15,000 year old deposits at Wekiwa Spring.


Dr. J.P. Gannon

Episode 2: Armchair Geology - Hydrology, event recording (3/31/21)
"How Do We Measure Tiny Mountain Streams? And Why?" with hydrologist J.P. Gannon, Virginia Tech University

J.P. Gannon, Collegiate Assistant Professor at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, presented the what and why of measuring "little rivulets of water, in which you can't even float!" Gannon teaches environmental informatics in Virginia Tech’s Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation program. His presentation addresses how hydrologists measure these systems to quantify their health and to determine how they work—from streamflow and groundwater to stream chemistry and temperature—along with some of the fun idiosyncrasies that come along with doing this kind of fieldwork. "I hope participants come away with an appreciation of the importance of headwater streams and understand some of the interesting implications of our simple measurements," says Gannon.

Structural Geology

Dr. Cheryl Waters-Tormey

Episode 3: Armchair Geology - Tectonics & Structural Geology, event recording (4/7/21)
"Structural Geology ‘Easter Eggs’ and Landslide Hazard Studies in the NC Mountains" with structural geologist Cheryl Waters-Tormey, Western Carolina University

Cheryl Waters-Tormey, PhD, Associate Professor of structural geology at Western Carolina University, presented ongoing research documenting patterns of geological structures in the bedrock of the Hickory Nut Gorge area of the North Carolina Appalachian mountains. Her program features field methods and research results from her collaborative work investigating slopes, outcrops, and rock formations to advance understanding of natural-hazard processes. Since outcrops are relatively rare in heavily vegetated western NC, Waters-Tormey also discusses how field-acquired data are augmented with remote sensing data.

Metamorphic Uplift

Ethan Fagan, Llano Uplift, Texas

Episode 4: Armchair Geology - Metamorphic Uplift, event recording (4/22/21)
"Granites of the Llano Uplift in Central Texas" with geology senior Ethan Fagan, University of Texas - San Antonio

Ethan Fagan, a geology senior at The University of Texas at San Antonio, presented the fourth and final program in the Gillespie Museum’s spring 2021 Armchair Geology series. Fagan discusses the origin and nature of the metamorphic core complex of the Llano Uplift in the Texas hill country, and its associated rock formations, the Streeter and Grit plutons. He presents collaborative research, led by Walter Gray, PhD, University of Texas, San Antonio, on these plutons (deep-seated intrusions of igneous rock), along with methodology for processing rock samples in a laboratory to determine their age and composition.

Spring Exhibit Events - videos

Natural Dyes - Kayla Powers

Artist Kayla Powers

Exhibit Opening & Artist Talk with Kayla Powers; event recording (2/1/21)
Natural Dyes Demonstration with Kayla Powers; event recording (2/2/21)

Kayla Powers is a weaver and natural dyer whose studios are in Detroit, Michigan. Her work focuses on local, natural color derived from plants - foraged from and cultivated in the city.  During a visit to the Stetson campus, she presented a live-streamed Artist Talk on her textile exhibit, and a Dye Demo workshop for Stetson art students, exploring local natural dye plants and demonstrating sustainable practices in creating a swatch book of botanical color. Her Naturally Dyed Textiles exhibit was on display from February 1-March 26 in the Environmental Gallery of the Rinker Environmental Learning Center (RELC) adjacent to the Gillespie Museum.  See more about Powers's art on her website.  

Earth Monument of Florida - Alan Sonfist

Interview & Artist Talk with Alan Sonfist; event recording (3/9/21; including slides associated with the Earth Pandemic exhibits)

Work by renowned environmental land art pioneer Alan Sonfist was on display in both the Gillespie Museum and the Hand Art Center, March 2-April 30, in a joint exhibit called "Earth Pandemic."  Sonfist's Gillespie installation Earth Monument of Florida is a geological artwork from his landmark "Corings" series, developed between 1971-2012. You can learn more about Alan Sonfist's art on his website.