Under a half-hour drive from Asheville, the Mineral and Lapidary Museum is located in Hendersonville’s historic district. The town, which was entered into the National Register of Historic Places in 1988. It features countless antique stores, galleries, shops, and museums. The Bearfootin’ Public Art Walk offers fiberglass bears painted in different themes. It is shown from May to October.
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Founded in 1997, the Mineral and Lapidary Museum is a volunteer-run, non-profit. It is nicknamed the Geode-Cracking Museum for the popular practice of staff members cracking open geodes daily. The Mineral Museum’s primary goal is to provide educational and informative resources on the geology and paleontology earth sciences local to the region.
To truly glimpse the natural beauty of the state’s minerals, fossils and artifacts found not only in North Carolina but around the country, visitors should explore the museum’s popular exhibits that offer an in-depth look into the diverse underground treasures and unusual meteorites discovered in the region. Since North Carolina has one of the nation’s richest and most distinct mineral deposits, the Museum features a stunning array of minerals, gems, fossils, and artifacts from around the state. The Hendersonville meteorite is one of the more noted displays, while other beloved exhibits for kids are the Museum’s tyrannosaurus rex skull and wooly mammoth leg bone.
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For a deeper look into the museum, the website Hendersonville’s Best has a museum video that highlights the uniqueness and many features of this town’s true gem. Admission is free, but donations and gift shop purchases are appreciated. Museum hours are Monday through Friday from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Saturdays from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.