Skip to main content

Science & Nature Programs

Lecture/Seminar

Birding in a Winter Wonderland

Wednesday, December 7, 2022 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Not all birds fly south for the winter: Many species find their way to homes in temperate North America. Naturalist Matt Felperin shares valuable tips on how to the make the most of winter birding in the mid-Atlantic region and why it’s one of the most rewarding and magical times for spotting seasonal visitors from ducks and geese to songbirds and raptors.


Tour

Holidays at Winterthur and Longwood Gardens: Featuring Jacqueline Kennedy and H. F. du Pont: From Winterthur to the White House

Sunday, December 11, 2022 - 8:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. ET

Kick off your holidays in grand style with a day spent visiting two special destinations. Begin at Winterthur to view the opulent holiday décor and take in the exhibition Jacqueline Kennedy and H. F. du Pont: From Winterthur to the White House. An evening visit to nearby Longwood Gardens offers time on your own to relax, wander the grounds, and take in the spectacular seasonal decorations.


Lecture/Seminar

How Weather Has Shaped Human History

Thursday, December 15, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. ET

Dramatic weather might seem to be a new phenomenon, but weather and climate change have been shaping human history for thousands of years. Historian Caroline Winterer examines a series of weather-driven turning points that were strong enough to force migration, end wars, and create famines—and how the aftermath of past climate change might affect our future.


Lecture/Seminar

The Geology of Western National Parks: Big Bend, Texas

Monday, January 9, 2023 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Join geologist Kirt Kempter as he explores the geology of Western National Parks over the course of 2023, with an in-depth look at one location every month. He kicks off the series with a focus on parks in Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. This program spotlights Big Bend National Park in Texas.


Lecture/Seminar

How To Nourish Your Mental Health

Wednesday, January 18, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET

Food has power to nourish your mind, supporting emotional wellness through both nutrients and pleasure. Drawing from her new book, Eat and Flourish: How Food Supports Emotional Well Being, journalist Mary Beth Albright looks at cutting-edge research to explain the connection between food and mood, interprets studies from the new field of nutritional psychology, and offers straightforward suggestions for what to eat and how to eat it.  


Lecture/Seminar

A Garden Odyssey: In Search of the World’s Most Creative Gardens

Wednesday, January 18, 2023 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Imagine traveling the world passionately searching for the most exquisite and creatively designed gardens. Baltimore landscape architect Scott C. Scarfone was given just such an opportunity. Follow his garden globetrotting as he recounts memorable visits to fabulous garden sites across the globe.


Lecture/Seminar

A Journey into the Brain

Thursday, January 26, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Although we know a great deal about the brain, there is still so much more to learn. Join neuroscientist Eric Chudler as he leads an interactive guided tour of our most important organ, offering insights into our current knowledge of the brain and suggesting the directions future research may take.


Lecture/Seminar

A Panda Story: Celebrating Giant Pandas at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute with David M. Rubenstein

Monday, January 30, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET

In-Person and Online Program: The arrival of the iconic giant pandas Ling-Ling and Hsing-Hsing at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in the spring of 1972 marked the start of a program that has drawn millions of fans from around the world. It has also provided the Smithsonian an unparalleled opportunity for study. Philanthropist David M. Rubenstein, an instrumental longtime supporter of the program, and Brandie Smith, the Zoo’s director, discuss the history of giant panda care at the Smithsonian, what scientists have learned throughout the decades, and what might be next for current residents Xiao Qi Ji, Mei Xiang, and Tian Tian.


Lecture/Seminar

Galápagos Islands: Darwin’s Smoking Gun

Tuesday, January 31, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

The young Charles Darwin’s observations from his 1835 exploration of the ecologically unique Galápagos Islands were pivotal to his eventual realization that organisms change with time and that they evolve. Biologist John Kricher and photographer Kevin Loughlin discuss the rich array of fauna and flora of the Galápagos that Darwin might have found, as well as the notable, if not quirky, human history on the islands.


Lecture/Seminar

Botanical Gardens World Tour: Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and the Eden Project

Sunday, February 5, 2023 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

Indulge in a colorful midwinter escape as horticultural experts lead a series of virtual visits that highlight the beauty of notable botanical gardens. This program spotlights Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and the Eden Project.


Lecture/Seminar

The Geology of Western National Parks: Carlsbad Caverns and White Sands

Monday, February 6, 2023 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Join geologist Kirt Kempter as he explores the geology of Western National Parks over the course of 2023, with an in-depth look at one location every month. He kicks off the series with a focus on parks in Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. This program spotlights Carlsbad Caverns and White Sands, both in New Mexico.


Lecture/Seminar

Botanical Gardens World Tour: Singapore Botanic Garden and Norfolk Botanical Gardens

Sunday, February 12, 2023 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

Indulge in a colorful midwinter escape as horticultural experts lead a series of virtual visits that highlight the beauty of notable botanical gardens. This program spotlights the Singapore Botanic Garden and Norfolk Botanical Gardens.


Course

Evocative Concert Music from Europe’s Northern Countries

Tuesday, February 14, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. ET

Geography, geology, wind and weather, legend and language: all play a role in shaping the artistic vocabulary of national identity, and none more so than the countries situated around the wild oceans of the Baltic, North, and Norwegian seas. Popular speaker and concert pianist Rachel Franklin draws on unique live piano demonstrations and fascinating film clips to explore both well- and lesser-known masterpieces by composers from this region.


Lecture/Seminar

Botanical Gardens World Tour: Temple Gardens of Kyoto, Japan

Sunday, February 19, 2023 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

Indulge in a colorful midwinter escape as horticultural experts lead a series of virtual visits that highlight the beauty of notable botanical gardens. This program spotlights the Temple Gardens of Kyoto, Japan.


Lecture/Seminar

An Anatomy of Addiction

Wednesday, February 22, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Medical historian Howard Markel traces the careers of two brilliant young doctors—Sigmund Freud, neurologist, and William Halsted, surgeon—showing how their powerful addictions to cocaine shaped their enormous contributions to psychology and medicine. He also examines the physical and emotional damage caused by the then-heralded wonder drug, and how each man ultimately changed the world in spite of it.


Lecture/Seminar

Back from the Brink: Lessons from Wildlife Species Defying Extinction

Monday, February 27, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET

Against the bleak backdrop of wildlife species moving toward extinction, there are also glimmers of hope and lessons to be learned from animals that have defied these global trends. Christopher J. Preston, author of Tenacious Beasts: Wildlife Recoveries That Change How We Think About Animals, reveals the mysteries and challenges at the heart of these resurgences.


Lecture/Seminar

The Geology of Western National Parks: Grand Canyon, Arizona

Monday, March 6, 2023 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Join geologist Kirt Kempter as he explores the geology of Western National Parks over the course of 2023, with an in-depth look at one location every month. He kicks off the series with a focus on parks in Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. This program spotlights the Grand Canyon in Arizona.