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Utah Natural History Museum Opens Friday

Visitors to the Past Worlds hall can see and learn about prehistoric life in Utah

The new Natural History Museum of Utah at the University of Utah in Salt Lake will open to the public on Nov. 18. Dubbed the Rio Tinto Center, the $103 million building was funded by public and private contributions.

Exhibits have been collected from every county in Utah, an aspect which has been incorporated into the displays. The museum is calling this interactive smartphone-based program "Trailhead to Utah." In addition to providing guided tours via phones, the feature will also provide visitors with out-of-museum contacts so they can visit to expand their experience. There are four "trails" visitors can explore:

Museum highlights, in which people can explore prehistoric topics ranging from pictographs, to geologic samples to dinosaur quarries;

Energy, which guides visitors all the way from photosynthesis to photovoltaic panels;

Sustainability, which shows people strategies nature has used to sustain life on Earth, and how people are dealing with challenges today; and

Inspired by Nature, a look at the process and inspiration behind the writing, painting, photographs, native objects, dinosaur reconstruction and multimedia in the museum.

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