They'll think.
They're playing.

At CuriOdyssey, we treat kids like the geniuses they are. We let them loose to observe wild animals, experiment with scientific phenomena and let the natural world answer their questions. Because learning to think like a scientist early on gives them the tools they’ll need to take on the real-world challenges of the future.

RachelHeadshot - low res_small


Give kids the superpower of real science.

Hi,

We challenge young minds to ask “what if?”, then let the natural world answer their questions. We believe this builds the reasoning and analytical skills they’ll need to become our next generation of thinkers, problem-solvers and innovators.

Founded by the San Mateo County Junior Museum Auxiliary in 1954, we’ve grown from a simple Quonset hut to a premier Bay Area science center and zoo with attendance soaring to over 150,000 annually.

Now, we’re launching our next bold plan to give more kids the power to tackle the challenges of the future.

The future CuriOdyssey will become one of the most vibrant and respected centers for informal science for young minds in the Bay Area. Help us realize our vision of creating a serious science playground.

 

Curiodyssey
Executive Director

While we have a 60-year legacy, our journey to reinvent ourselves as CuriOdyssey began just eight years ago. In that time, we’ve become a nationally recognized education center and an invaluable resource for the community. We offer more than 100,000 young visitors up-close encounters with real science annually. Summer camps regularly sell out within days, and we host hundreds of classes for Bay Area schools, with the demand increasing year after year.

We’re doing all this work in a building that was cutting edge for its time. But today, it just doesn’t support our expanded mission, and we are squeezing into available space. This community deserves a best-in-class resource that can better serve our kids and suit our programs.

We are doing things at CuriOdyssey that the school district had not been able to accomplish in forty years.

Associate Superintendent of Instructional Services, San Mateo County Office of Education; currently CEO A2Z Educational Consultants Inc.

Leadership

Campaign Co-Chairs
Linda Lanier, Kathryn Taylor
Chair
Connie Sevier
Vice Chairs
Ann Aristides, Amy Ramsey, Ryan Polley
Treasurer
Joseph Winters
Secretary
Tara Samuels
Trustees
A. Charles Cattano III, Patricia Dassios, Tina Clarke Dur, Ph.D, Aaron Gruber, Cathy Krikorian, Linda Lanier, Anne Lynde, Kimarie Matthews, Jordan Murray, Gordon Myers, Gisela A. Paulsen, Holly Rockwood, Robert Shambarger, Danielle Simon, Nancy Spencer, Beth Springer, Patrice Wilbur
Volunteer Representative
Kirstan Price
Emeritus Trustees
Thomas R. Brown, Robert Henderson, Kathryn Taylor, Polly Hoover Taylor
Advisory Council
Dr. Paul Doherty, Edith Eddy, Dave Holland, Marilyn Loushin-Miller, Dr. Vera Michalchik, Peter Steinhart
Executive Director
Rachel Meyer
BUILD IT AND THEY
WILL BECOME.

Science is a superpower. It’s the strongest force we have to change and shape our world. And with this power, our kids can take on any challenge the future holds.

That’s why we’re raising $35 million to turn CuriOdyssey into the ultimate serious science playground. We will modernize and completely remake our building utilizing the principles of sustainable architecture. We will vastly increase our usable space, allowing for more classrooms, camps, exhibits and school programs.

We will offer new experiences such as a wildlife observation deck and outdoor natural play area. These renovations will ultimately take CuriOdyssey from a community treasure to a world-class institution.

I don’t think there is another area of the curriculum that excites them as much as science, thanks to your program.

Educator, San Mateo County

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Amelia
'Lightning Strike'
Richards
Director, National Weather
Service, 2046

Facts & Figures

Located in 670-acre Coyote Point
Recreation Area, San Mateo, California

Organization History

3.5M
Annual Budget
170,885
Annual Audience
30%
Education Programs Offered
Free to Underserved Youth
11,562
Hours Donated
4,476
CuriOdyssey-on-the-Go
Participants
709
Campers in Summer Camps
(98% capacity)
480
Educational Programs Annually
180
Volunteers
110
Native California Animals
50
Interactive Science
Exhibits On Site
1953
San Mateo County Junior Museum is founded by the San Francisco Junior League to teach environmental stewardship to children.
1974
Renamed Coyote Point Museum for Environmental Education.
1981
Opened main building, adding dioramas of California habitats.
1991
In consultation with Stanford professors, built and opened authentic wildlife habitats.
2007
Engaged current Executive Director Rachel Meyer and introduced broader mission of science education for young people.
2010
Ecosystem dioramas reach end of useful life and are de-installed.
2011
CuriOdyssey receives AZA accreditation again, one of fewer than 10% of all zoos to do so.
2011
Renamed CuriOdyssey to reflect expanded mission.
2012
Began planning for re-design, repair and renovation of main building to meet the new mission.
2013
Updated our mission to reflect our focus on children and science/nature literacy: As a science and wildlife center, CuriOdyssey helps children acquire the tools to deeply understand the
changing world.

Facts & Figures

Located in 670-acre Coyote Point
Recreation Area, San Mateo, California
3.5M
Annual Budget
170,885
Annual Audience
30%
Education Programs Offered
Free to Underserved Youth
11,562
Hours Donated
4,476
CuriOdyssey-on-the-Go
Participants
709
Campers in Summer Camps
(98% capacity)
480
Educational Programs Annually
180
Volunteers
110
Native California Animals
50
Interactive Science
Exhibits On Site
1953
San Mateo County Junior Museum is founded by the San Francisco Junior League to teach environmental stewardship to children.
1974
Renamed Coyote Point Museum for Environmental Education.
1981
Opened main building, adding dioramas of California habitats.
1991
In consultation with Stanford professors, built and opened authentic wildlife habitats.
2007
Engaged current Executive Director Rachel Meyer and introduced broader mission of science education for young people.
2010
Ecosystem dioramas reach end of useful life and are de-installed.
2011
CuriOdyssey receives AZA accreditation again, one of fewer than 10% of all zoos to do so.
2011
Renamed CuriOdyssey to reflect expanded mission.
2012
Began planning for re-design, repair and renovation of main building to meet the new mission.
2013
Updated our mission to reflect our focus on children and science/nature literacy: As a science and wildlife center, CuriOdyssey helps children acquire the tools to deeply understand the
changing world.

Organization History

3.5M
Annual Budget
170,885
Annual Audience
30%
Education Programs Offered
Free to Underserved Youth
11,562
Hours Donated
4,476
CuriOdyssey-on-the-Go
Participants
709
Campers in Summer Camps
(98% capacity)
480
Educational Programs Annually
180
Volunteers
110
Native California Animals
50
Interactive Science
Exhibits On Site
1953
San Mateo County Junior Museum is founded by the San Francisco Junior League to teach environmental stewardship to children.
1974
Renamed Coyote Point Museum for Environmental Education.
1981
Opened main building, adding dioramas of California habitats.
1991
In consultation with Stanford professors, built and opened authentic wildlife habitats.
2007
Engaged current Executive Director Rachel Meyer and introduced broader mission of science education for young people.
2010
Ecosystem dioramas reach end of useful life and are de-installed.
2011
CuriOdyssey receives AZA accreditation again, one of fewer than 10% of all zoos to do so.
2011
Renamed CuriOdyssey to reflect expanded mission.
2012
Began planning for re-design, repair and renovation of main building to meet the new mission.
2013
Updated our mission to reflect our focus on children and science/nature literacy: As a science and wildlife center, CuriOdyssey helps children acquire the tools to deeply understand the
changing world.
Lisa 'Big Air' Rogers
Aeronautical Engineer,
Class of 2031
YOU INVEST.
THEY'LL INVENT.

Science education is more important than ever and it’s time we give it the attention it deserves. With the new CuriOdyssey as our hub, and by changing the way kids learn about science, we can pave the way for new generations of critical thinkers, problem-solvers, innovators and environmental stewards. So let’s build the future of CuriOdyssey so our kids can build theirs.

Science education is more important than ever and it’s time we give it the attention it deserves. With the new CuriOdyssey as our hub, and by changing the way kids learn about science, we can pave the way for new generations of critical thinkers, problem-solvers, innovators and environmental stewards. So let’s build the future of CuriOdyssey so our kids can build theirs.

DONATE NOW

During the quiet phase of the campaign, The TomKat Charitable Trust and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, together with CuriOdyssey’s Board of Trustees, have invested a combined total of $11m. And many other generous donors joined in to get us to the halfway mark. We thank all of our visionary leaders.

And now we invite our community at large to join our cause and create our serious science playground here on the Bay in San Mateo County.

Thanks to your support we met the $2m Challenge Grant from the TomKat Charitable Trust.  Find out more.

$11 million will fund educational programs, exhibit development, campaign costs and partnerships with local schools and community organizations.
$24 million will go towards expanding and modernizing our main building and creating an outdoor natural play area.
chart1

The Packard Foundation has been pleased to invest in the education of California’s children by supporting CuriOdyssey’s programs since 2007. CuriOdyssey is an excellent science and environmental education center that is working to build a science-literate population of practical problem-solvers and flexible thinkers. As CuriOdyssey embarks upon this exciting new phase of their organizational development, we are proud to make a major investment in the campaign.

Chairman of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation

Leadership Gifts: $22.1 Million To Date

To date, we have raised more than $22.1 million in gifts and pledges, over halfway to our goal!

Major leadership donors along with CuriOdyssey’s Board of Trustees invested a combined total of $12 million to launch our campaign. Lead donors include:

  • The TomKat Charitable Trust
  • Sunlight Giving
  • The David and Lucile Packard Foundation
  • Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation
  • John and Marcia Goldman Foundation
  • Jennifer and Owen Van Natta
  • Cathy and Blake Krikorian

Many other generous individual donors, foundations and corporations have joined in to get us beyond the halfway mark.

Regional Partnerships

Wildlife conservation and animal care
River Otter Ecology Project
Bay Area Bobcat Project
FrogWatch
Stanford University
Utah State University
Community outreach
Free field trips for schools with 50% or more students qualifying for free/reduced cost lunch.
Fiesta Gardens International School: Science education to all Kindergarten through 5th grade classrooms.
Horral Elementary School: Science education to all Kindergarten through 1st grade classrooms.
Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Bay Area
Mid-Penninsula Boys and Girls Clubs

Awards

  • Association of Science-Technology Centers Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge
    Award for Experienced Leadership in the Field - Rachel Meyer, Executive Director, 2009
  • Certificate of Merit for Zoo Keeper Education Award - CuriOdyssey, 2011
    Lee Houts Excellence in Enrichment Award - Jen Gale, 2011
  • Excellence in Journalism Award - Eunice Hui, 2013
  • Certificate of Merit in Conservation Award - Nikii Finch-Morales, 2013
  • Best Museum on the Peninsula, Bay Area Parent Magazine - CuriOdyssey, annually since 2009
  • Maker Faire Educators Choice Award - CuriOdyssey, annually since 2011.
  • Maker Faire Editors Choice and Best in Class Awards - CuriOdyssey, 2014 & 2015
  • Certificate of Merit for Zoo Keeper Education Award - CuriOdyssey, 2014

What's Happening

outdoor sculpture in gardens May 28, 2016
Curiosity has a firm foot in a new door after officials with the local nonprofit science museum at Coyote Point announced CuriOdyssey raised $22 million toward a facility revamp and ...
Curiosity has a firm foot in a new door after officials with the local nonprofit science museum at Coyote Point announced CuriOdyssey raised $22 million toward a facility revamp and ...
News
large tree and water on the bay May 10, 2016
Wonderful news! During the past decade, CuriOdyssey became a nationally recognized education center with more than 50 custom science exhibits, rich science and conservation education programs and an award-winning AZA accredited ...
Wonderful news! During the past decade, CuriOdyssey became a nationally recognized education center with more than 50 custom science exhibits, rich science and conservation education programs and an award-winning AZA accredited ...
News
2 children meet a snake May 9, 2016
The blog CoolMomTech.com has listed CuriOdyssey as one of the seven best science museums for kids. We’re in good company with other notable ASTC institutions! Read more
The blog CoolMomTech.com has listed CuriOdyssey as one of the seven best science museums for kids. We’re in good company with other notable ASTC institutions! Read more
News
blog-hikers-570x255-1 October 23, 2015
CuriOdyssey announced today they have received landmark contributions totaling $19 million to create a “world-class, serious science playground” in San Mateo. Comprising more than 50 percent of a projected $35 ...
CuriOdyssey announced today they have received landmark contributions totaling $19 million to create a “world-class, serious science playground” in San Mateo. Comprising more than 50 percent of a projected $35 ...
News
outdoor sculpture in gardens May 28, 2016
Curiosity has a firm foot in a new door after officials with the local nonprofit science museum at Coyote Point announced CuriOdyssey raised $22 million toward a facility revamp and ...
Curiosity has a firm foot in a new door after officials with the local nonprofit science museum at Coyote Point announced CuriOdyssey raised $22 million toward a facility revamp and ...
News
large tree and water on the bay May 10, 2016
Wonderful news! During the past decade, CuriOdyssey became a nationally recognized education center with more than 50 custom science exhibits, rich science and conservation education programs and an award-winning AZA accredited ...
Wonderful news! During the past decade, CuriOdyssey became a nationally recognized education center with more than 50 custom science exhibits, rich science and conservation education programs and an award-winning AZA accredited ...
News
2 children meet a snake May 9, 2016
The blog CoolMomTech.com has listed CuriOdyssey as one of the seven best science museums for kids. We’re in good company with other notable ASTC institutions! Read more
The blog CoolMomTech.com has listed CuriOdyssey as one of the seven best science museums for kids. We’re in good company with other notable ASTC institutions! Read more
News
blog-hikers-570x255-1 October 23, 2015
CuriOdyssey announced today they have received landmark contributions totaling $19 million to create a “world-class, serious science playground” in San Mateo. Comprising more than 50 percent of a projected $35 ...
CuriOdyssey announced today they have received landmark contributions totaling $19 million to create a “world-class, serious science playground” in San Mateo. Comprising more than 50 percent of a projected $35 ...
News