Sen. Alesi Announces $500,000 For Rochester Museum & Science Center

James S. Alesi

February 12, 2007

Senator Jim Alesi (R– Perinton), Kate Bennett, President of the Rochester Museum & Science Center (RMSC), RMSC Chair of the Board Christine Whitman, Senator Joe Robach, Senator Mike Nozzolio, and Senator George Maziarz announced today that the Rochester Museum & Science Center will receive a $500,000 State grant to fund permanent exhibition projects. They were joined by members of the RMSC Board of Trustees.

"As Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Economic Development, and Small Business, I’m excited to join my colleagues in announcing the $500,000 State grant that the Rochester Museum & Science Center will receive," said Senator Alesi. "This grant will allow the Museum to expand its educational resources and engage the public in active learning. As the Rochester Museum & Science Center continues to grow and prosper, not only will it add value to our region’s economy, but it will also vastly improve the quality of life for all residents of the Greater Rochester area."

The largest part of the state grant will support the completion of RMSC’s spectacular new natural science exhibition, Expedition Earth. The first phase of this project opened in January 2006 to the delight of children, families, and educators. Visitors have come in record numbers to make their way through the glacial ice cave and examine 12,000-year-old bones of a mastodon discovered just south of Rochester. The final phase of the exhibition to be completed in October 2007 will explore the development of life in our region from the distant past before the Mesozoic Era, and engage visitors in an investigation of Western New York’s environment today. New exhibits will include re-created habitats of local birds, fish, and mammals, an "earthquake platform," and a beaver lodge that children can enter and explore.

The remaining funds are designated for the Rochester Business Hall of Fame exhibit on the Museum’s third floor. The Hall of Fame is the first step of a project that will transform this floor over the next several years to create Innovation Place, a hands-on exhibition to showcase Rochester’s heritage of invention and entrepreneurship and inspire the next generation.

"Senator Alesi, Senator Robach, Senator Nozzolio, and Senator Maziarz all recognize the great value that we and other museums contribute to our state’s educational fabric, economy, and quality of life," comments RMSC President Kate Bennett. "We thank them sincerely, and pledge to use this funding effectively to create powerful learning experiences that foster an appreciation of our region’s spectacular natural environment. One of the primary goals of RMSC exhibitions and programs is to nurture the pride and "sense of place" that is essential for our community to thrive."

"I am pleased to continue my support of the Rochester Museum & Science Center, said Senator Alesi. "The hands-on educational service this fine institution provides to the public, and especially to children, is an invaluable asset to our community and to our quality of life."