The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University
1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Philadelphia Shell Show and Festival
Saturday Oct 20 10:00 AM-5:00 PM
Join us for Treasures Revealed: Shells of the Americas. Go behind the scenes to see some of the 10 million specimens in the Malacology Collection, participate in mollusk dissections, shop the international shell market, and stop by the competitive displays.
Throughout the Museum
Meet the Mascot
Meet “Eddie,” the Academy’s brand-new T. rex mascot, as he tours the museum.
Ground Level in the Commons
International Shell Market
Buy shells, jewelry, and more!
Case of the SpongeBob
1:15, 3:30, and 4:15 p.m.
Meet real-life versions of the Bikini Bottom creatures, and learn what role these live animals play in the vast undersea kingdom that SpongeBob calls home. (Runtime 15 minutes)
Under the Sea
Learn about the ecology of the ocean and the characteristics of marine animals such as crabs, sea snails, clams, sea urchins, starfish, and fishes from expert Andrew Wilson. (Program is 30–40 minutes)
Live Animal Show
Meet some of our water-loving live animal ambassadors.
Live Animal Touch Table
Get up close with a variety of critters that were featured in Andrew Wilson’s Under the Sea program (auditorium at 11:30 a.m.) at this live animal touch table.
11 a.m., 1 and 3 p.m.
Take part in guided tours of the Academy’s Malacology Collection. Home to 10
million specimens, this collection is the oldest in the United States and the third largest in the world. Register for a tour at the Philadelphia Shell Club table.
Walter, Clamzilla, and Company
Check out rarely seen specimens from our Malacology Collection, including Walter, the giant Pacific octopus, and Clamzilla, the giant clam. Learn how they were collected and why they are important.
Shell Jewelry Making
Turn shells into beautiful jewelry, and then take your accessories home with you!
Competitive Shell Displays
Established collectors and amateur scientists compete for prizes with beautiful and informative displays on mollusks from around the world.
Philadelphia Shell Club
Members of all ages share a zeal for collecting, displaying, and learning about shells. Get free shells from the Academy’s Malacology Department!
Discover the beauty of colorful and artistic sailors’ valentines and other fine crafts entered into a competition for major regional and national prizes. Meet shell craftsman Bill Jordan and “sea” for yourself as he creates yet another shell masterpiece.
Name That Shell
11 a.m.–2 p.m.
Do you have a mystery shell that you’ve pushed to the back of a shelf? Are you saving a bag of treasures that you collected at the shore? Show your shells to experts at the Philadelphia Shell Club Table and have them identified.
What makes a clam a clam and a squid a squid? They both are mollusks, but physically, they’re very different. With the help of Academy educators, engage in dissecting a squid and clam to see their similarities and differences.
Shell crafts can be silly or sublime. Stop by the craft table to make a googly eyed shell critter. We supply the shells; you bring the creativity.
Under the Sea Tattoo Parlor
10 a.m.–5 p.m.
You don’t have to be a sailor to get one of our marine-themed tattoos! They’re painless, temporary, and free.
11 a.m.–5 p.m.
Do you think all shells are exactly the same? Take a closer look! Each shell is unique and has certain characteristics that link it to other shells. Be a shell detective, and find out what makes each shell a little different by playing our interactive games.