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After Dark: By the Sea

buoy1Oh buoy! San Francisco has an undeniable connection to the ocean. Our local ocean makes for fascinating ecosystems and special maritime economies. Come down to our historic pier and learn what it means to be in, on, and around the beautiful Pacific.  

Plankton Demo With the Explainers
6:30, 7:30, 8:30, and 9:30 p.m.  |  Gallery 4 Explainer Station

Living in the water beneath the Exploratorium at Pier 15 is an ever-changing community of microscopic plankton. Come see these plankton through a microscope and learn about local phytoplankton populations, which act as a foundation of oceanic food webs.

Buoy Extraction 
7:00 p.m.  |  Gallery 5

Watch us pull our buoy out of the water with a crane! Arrive on time to watch the whole process.

Sea Shanties With the Fishwives
7:00, 8:00, and 9:00 p.m.  |  Roaming

The question stands: what, exactly, do you do with a drunken sailor? Raise your voice and put your weight behind some classic sea shanties with The Fishwives and your fellow After Dark mates. Bring your own grog (or whatever you want from the nearest bar) and sing along. 

Coral Stories of Climate Change With Carina Fish
7:30 p.m.  |  Bechtel Gallery 3, Wattis Webcast Studio

Corals record in their skeletons the foods they’ve eaten and the environments in which they’ve grown, making them excellent markers of environmental change. Join UC Davis undersea researcher Carina Fish to learn about her work tracking human-induced changes to the deep sea by looking at the chemical composition of coral skeletons, their food sources, and the water itself. 

Unburied Ships of San Francisco With Richard Everett
8:30 p.m.  |  Bechtel Gallery 3, Wattis Webcast Studio

During the Gold Rush, almost a thousand ships came to San Francisco from all over the world. Many burned in the infamous May 4, 1851 fire, leaving their hulls and cargoes to be built over. Today, the people of San Francisco pass just above these buried ships and Muni passengers even pass right through one of their hulls! Join Richard Everett of the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park to learn about the history right under your feet.


Stanford Ocean Acidification Experience With The Virtual Human Interaction Lab
6:30-9:30 p.m.  |  Bechtel Gallery 3, Sun Painting

Coral reefs are some of the most important ecosystems on Earth, but their health depends on our use (or non-use) of fossil fuels. Observe firsthand what coral reefs are expected to look like by the end of the century if we don’t take action: step into an underwater ecosystem and observe the effects of ocean acidification the process by which the ocean becomes more acidic as it absorbs carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere n this VR experience from Stanford’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab. 

The Three Ps With Point Blue Conservation Science
6:30-9:30 p.m.  |  Gallery 4

Come meet working scientists and learn about how they study marine food webs using the three P’s: poop, puke, and plankton! 

In the (Tidal) Zone With Dana Carrison-Stone
7:00-9:00 p.m.  |  Gallery 4, Bio Bar

Come take a closer look at our spineless underwater neighbors! Join biologist Dana Carrison-Stone for microscope viewing of an assortment of marine invertebrates explore the Aristotle's lantern of a sea urchin, the beautiful tube feet of a sand dollar, the armor plates of a barnacle's peduncle, and other anatomical traits that often go unnoticed by the casual viewer. 

Buoy Exploration 7:00-9:00 p.m.  |  Gallery 5

Our data-collection buoy, on loan from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, spends its time measuring water temperature, carbon dioxide levels, and salinity in San Francisco Bay, and accumulating all kinds of aquatic life. For one week only (August 15-22), we’ve pulled it out of the water for servicing so come get up close and personal with the buoy and the species tagging along with it! We’ll provide microscopes, hand lenses, and activities to help you get acquainted, and educators and scientists will be on hand to answer questions and work with marine organisms that have tagged along.

Thursday, 08/15/19


Website: Click to Visit


17.95 advance, 19.95 door, AD members free

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Pier 15 (Embarcadero at Green Street)
San Francisco, CA 94111

Phone: (415) 528-4444
Website: Click to Visit