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Reading Public Museum

500 Museum Road
Reading, PA

Phone: 610-371-5850 - Tty: -

Statement of Purpose

The mission of the Reading Public Museum, a dynamic center of lifelong learning, is to collect, preserve and interpret objects of art, science, and civilization in order to educate, enlighten, and engage current and future generations.

Highlights & Collections:

Our main attractions include Edgar Degas, Raphaelle Peale, Tintoretto, Audubon, Butterflies, Attic Black Figure Hydria, Egyptian Mummy, Pennsylvania German Collection, Native American Collection, a Planetarium, and a 25-Acre Arboretum.

Native American, Butterflies, Pennsylvania German, American Art

Permanent Galleries of Art, Science and Civilization including Native American, Mexican, Central and South American; Natural Science; Asian; Ancient Civilizations; African; Arms and Armor; Oceanic; American Art; French 19th Century; 20th Century; Pennsylvania German and European.

Exhibits & Special Events

2004 Calendar of Events:

Dale Chihuly at the Reading Public Museum: A Celebration in Glass
May 23 - September 12, 2004
The Reading Public Museum has unveiled the largest exhibition ever mounted in Pennsylvania of renowned artist Dale Chihuly who stated "I am truly honored to exhibit my artwork at the Reading Public Museum on the occasion of their 100 year anniversary." The Museum is just as excited to present this exhibition to the community. Ron Roth, Director and CEO of the Museum comments, "Dale Chihuly has transformed the art of glassmaking, and is one of the most influential artists of our time. His legendary installations in Venice, Jerusalem and throughout the United States have brought new audiences to contemporary art. We are thrilled to have this exhibition for our 100th anniversary year."

Crime Lab Detectives
May 28 - September 12, 2004
Crime Lab Detectives is an interactive exhibit where visitors combine key evidence and clues with hands-on observational and laboratory activities to become crime lab detectives! Ron Roth, Director & CEO comments, "Crime Lab Detectives is an up-to-date adventure in forensic science detective work designed for family fun. It provides an opportunity for visitors to gain insight into how the application of practical science has such an important impact on our lives."

"Red Rose K-9 Search & Rescue Team Presentation" Friday, June 25, 2004 - Two Presentations: Noon AND 2:00pm. This volunteer, non-profit organization assists local authorities and members of their community in locating lost/missing persons. The team's bloodhounds are trained to trail human scent from "scent articles." Demonstrations will start in the Auditorium and proceed outside. "McGruff" from the Crime Prevention Dept. will also be visiting! Free.

"DNA Analysis Workshop with Dr. Stephen Campion, Alvernia College" Sunday, July 11, 2004 from 1:00pm to 2:30pm. Ages 12 to Adult. This workshop will cover the topic of DNA Analysis. Attendees will discuss what DNA molecules look like, what makes them useful in identification, and will look at the techniques that are used in the analysis of a person's DNA. Pre-registration required. Call 610-371-5850 ext. 235. Members $5, Non-members $10.

"Middle Creek Search & Rescue Team Presentation (MIDSAR)" Saturday, July 24, 2004 at 11:00am. This team of trained volunteers provides search and rescue operations in South Central PA. Their motto is "So That Others May Live." Presentation will start in the Auditorium and proceed outside. MIDSAR will then present a "mock search." "McGruff" from the Crime Prevention Department will also be visiting! Free.


Venice Observed: Images of the Paradise of Cities
May 8 - September 5, 2004
Venice Observed: Images of the Paradise of Cities features eight oil paintings, a watercolor and a print from the Museum's permanent collection with Venice as the subject. The exhibition provides an exploration of the essential uniqueness of Venetian architecture-called venezianita-and its sumptuous and ever-changing engagement with the light, color and atmosphere of Venice that has captivated visitors for centuries.

Berks Now: Kristen Tabone Woodward
May 15 - August 1, 2004
In response to visitor and Member requests to see more local art, Berks Now is an exhibition program that has been launched to feature the work of local artists, many from Berks County. The second artist to be featured is Kristen Tabone Woodward, Associate Professor & Department Chair, Albright College.

Woodward's series Civilizations, mixed media on pelt stretcher boards, will be featured in the auditorium hallway May 15 through August 1, 2004. Ron Roth, Director & CEO comments, "Kristin Woodward's installation is inspired by ethnographic materials in the Reading Public Museum's Oceanic collections. She has taken design features of objects from Australian Aboriginal culture and created an iconography of color and design that is evocative and rich in association. Visitors will have a rich and unique experience viewing her exceptional work."


N.C. Wyeth Patriotic Paintings

Berks Now: Yadira Torres
08/14/04 - 10/24/04

Oxymorons: Absurdly Logical Quilts
09/26/04 - 11/14/04

The Art of Children's Books: Original Artwork by Caldecott Award Winners
09/26/04 - 01/16/05

Exploring the Deep
10/10/04 - 01/09/05

2005 Calendar of Events:

Samuel L. Schmucker: The Golden Age of the Postcard
January 22 - July 4, 2005

Berks Art Alliance
July 24 - September 2005

From Hip Hop to Hiroshima: the Radiant Journey of Keith Haring
September 24, 2005 - January 30, 2006

Bugs by Evan Summer
September 17, 2005 - January 8, 2006


From the West or South: Take the Pennsylvania Turnpike East to Exit 21 Denver. Follow signs and take 222 North. Continue on 222 North to light in Shillington at Royers Flowers. Make a left at this traffic light onto Museum Road and continue approximately 2 miles staying left at the "Y" (toward Reading). Museum is on the left at the bottom of the hill. Turn left onto either Parkside Drive South or at the main entrance which is the next driveway to the left.

From the East: Take Schuylkill Expressway 1-76 W to (old) Exit 26B toward Valley Forge Route 422 West toward Pottstown. Follow 422 West past Pottstown until you are passing Reading on your right (stay on 422 West highway). Follow the signs and take the Penn AVENUE/West Reading Exit. Make a right off the exit and go to top of hill and turn left on 5th Avenue. Go through 4 traffic lights, at the 4th traffic light (Parkside North) go through the light and over bridge and the Museum driveway is immediately on your right, or enter on Parkside Drive South, a half block further on the right.

From the North: Heading west, take I-78 to 100 South or 61 South to 222 South, or heading east take 183 South to 222 South. Follow 222 South/422 East to West Reading/Penn AVENUE Exit. Make a right off the exit and go to top of hill and turn left on 5th Avenue. Go through 4 traffic lights, at the 4th traffic light (Parkside North) go through the light and over bridge and the Museum driveway is immediately on your right, or enter on Parkside Drive South, a half block further on the right.

Parking is in the lot between the Museum and Planetarium using either the main entrance or from Parkside Drive South.


$7 Adults, $5 Children (4-17), Members & children under 4 free.


11am to 5pm Tuesday, Thursday thru Saturday
11am to 8pm Wednesday
12pm to 5pm Sunday

Key Personnel:

Ronald C. Roth, Director & CEO

Michael Feyers, Science Curator
Jackie Isamoyer-Rollman, Financial Officer
Marsha Lehman, Director of Life-Long Learning
Mark Mazurkiewicz, Planetarium Producer
Peter Poncherei, Facilities Manager
Darlene Roth, Development Coordinator
Ronald Roth, Director &CEO
Margaret Upham, Museum Shop Manager
Marcia Ustaszewski, PR/Marketing Director
Ann Wellock, Friends Executive Director
Deborah Winkler, Registrar/Assistant Director

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