55 Music Concourse Dr.
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco CA
94118
415.379.8000
Regular Hours:

Daily

9:30 am – 5:00 pm

Sunday

11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Members' Hours:

Tuesday

8:30 – 9:30 am

Sunday

10:00 – 11:00 am
Closures
Notices

Please note: The Academy will be closing at 3:00 pm on 10/24 (final entry at 2:00 pm). We apologize for any inconvenience.

Parking and traffic in Golden Gate Park will be congested the weekend of Oct. 3–5. Save $3 on Academy admission when you take public transportation.

 

NightLife at the Academy

Every Thursday night a new adventure unfolds.  Set out with friends on a journey to the stars and to the depths of the sea with a cocktail in your hand and wonder in your eyes— only at NightLife at the California Academy of Sciences.  21+, ID required for entry. 6-10 pm (Exhibit times vary)

Dance Party NightLife

Dance Party NightLife

Music by DJ Rockin 
21+ event, 6:00-10:00 pm

Grab a partner—or a few—and head to NightLife for a museum-wide dance-a-thon. From belly dancing to vogue-ing to barn-style contra dancing and salsa—the world of movement is your oyster during this one-night-only rhythm fest.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS 

Dance Workshops in African Hall (Level 1)

  • 7:45 pm, Barn Dancing instruction with Ellen Levitt
  • 8:30 pm, Salsa Workout with YMCA 

Dance Workshops & Performances in the Coral Reef
(Lower Level / Aquarium)

  • 7:30 pm, Catch special duet performances throughout the aquarium  by ODC Dance
  • 8:45 pm, Belly-Dancing instruction with Jeanette Walton

Dance Workshops & Performances in the Piazza
(Level 1)

  • 7:30 pm, Want to break a sweat while skipping the gym? Learn how to turn dance into an aerobic endeavor with Rhythm & Motion Dance, a high-energy workout class for everyone. Instruction by Rami Margron and Rena Marie Guidry.
  • 8:15 pm, Bust a move, then watch the pros work it out with two performances by ODC Dance, performing a routine titled “Waving Not Drowning” choreographed by Brenda Way.
  • 9:00 pm, Vogue & Global Street Dance instruction by Jocquese Whitfield & Rashad Pridgen

Insect Dances by the Project Lab (Level 1)
6:30-9:00 pm, Meet Academy entomologist Lina Almeida and learn how spiders and scorpions use dance to communicate (grab a pair of headphones and listen to a spider’s flamenco-like sounds).

In the planetarium, grab a seat for BELLA GAIA, a mind-blowing presentation that combines NASA Earth satellite imagery, time-lapse nature photography, and live music and dance footage from around the world in one unprecedented audiovisual experience. 

21+ Event, ID required for entry.

Note: The 4-story Rainforest exhibit closes at 7:45pm and planetarium passes are distributed to visitors on a first-come first-served basis. Special programs and lectures may have limited seating and admission will also be made available to visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.

Buy Tickets

RSVP on Facebook

 

 
Universe Update

Planetarium

Enjoy the following planetarium shows this week at NightLife:

6:30 pm
Earth Update: Spotted Eagle Rays

Join Kim Bassos-Hull, Senior Biologist at Mote Marine Lab, and Anna Sellas, Laboratory and Collections Manager for the Academy’s Center for Comparative Genomics, in the planetarium as they look back at our own planet and species that inhabit it. Spotted eagle rays are large, beautiful rays, currently protected in Florida state waters and distributed across the world. Kim and Anna will share their stories of how conservation has connected countries and researchers to better understand and protect these rays. Please join us for this immersive look at our blue planet.

7:30 & 8:30 pm
BELLA GAIA
An unprecedented audiovisual experience that combines NASA satellite imagery of Earth, time lapse nature photography, and cultural heritage footage with stirring live performances of music and dance from around the world. Inspired by astronauts who spoke of the life changing power of seeing the Earth from space, director-composer Kenji Williams’ award winning BELLA GAIA successfully simulates the Overview Effect from space flight, by using NASA supercomputer data-visualizations to explore the relationship between humans and nature through time and space, with a “message of oneness amidst a deeply moving and shimmering soundscape that combines sacred dance with gorgeous sets and stunning imagery” (Blog Talk Radio).

Note: Passes to planetarium shows are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Sharktoberfest NightLife

Sharktoberfest NightLife

21+ event, 6:00-10:00 pm
Music by Blow Musik!

It’s that time of year—when toothy sharks and thirsty humans unite for a salute to brews with an aquatic twist.

In the East Garden, sip your way through a pop-up beer garden with libations on tap from dozens of local breweries, including Pacific Brewing Laboratory, Lagunitas, Almanac Beer Co., Speakeasy Ales & Lagers, Anderson Valley Brewing Company, Magnolia Gastropub and Brewery, Social Kitchen & Brewery, CaliCraft, Ale Industries, Triple VooDoo, and more—all amidst a soundscape of traditional German tunes by Blow Musik!.

In the East Pavilion, meet the ocean crusaders working to protect threatened shark populations with the Pacific Shark Research Center and Shark Stewards.

Down in the Coral Reef, meet folks from the Ocean Research Foundation and try your hand (or fin) at shark-themed trivia.

Catch a special shark-themed presentation led by Academy researcher Dave Ebert at 6:30 pm, followed by two showings of Dark Universe in the planetarium.

Chat with the Academy’s resident fish guru Dr. Luiz Rocha as he shows off shark specimens from the Academy’s collection, and meet Academy librarian Kelly Jensen and UC Davis researcher Sarah Friedman as they raid the museum archives to bring out their coolest, sharkiest artifacts.

Plus, view stunning scientific illustrations by Martha Iserman. Care to make this a night to remember? Design (and take home) your own shark hat or fins with the help of crafters from SCRAP. Bite that!

21+ Event, ID required for entry.

Note: The 4-story Rainforest exhibit closes at 7:45pm and planetarium passes are distributed to visitors on a first-come first-served basis. Special programs and lectures may have limited seating and admission will also be made available to visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.

Buy Tickets

RSVP on Facebook

 

 
Dark Universe

Planetarium

Enjoy the following planetarium shows this week at NightLife:

6:30 pm
Earth Update: Sharks

Join Dr. Dave Ebert and Paul Clerkin from Moss Landing Marine Labs, in the planetarium as they look back at our own planet and emphasize the shark in Sharktober. Get immersed in a wonderful world of "lost" sharks as we traverse the globe and highlight unique sharks and share why they are important to protect and conserve. Please join us for this fintastic look at our blue planet.

7:30 & 8:30 pm
Dark Universe
Explore two of today’s greatest cosmic mysteries—dark matter and dark energy—in a vast, data-fueled starscape of beauty and wonder. Hurtle through deep space and be there for the birth of our own galaxy while exploring never-before-seen visualizations of the invisible matter and forces at work in our Universe.

Note: Passes to planetarium shows are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.

NightLife LIVE: Navigation

NightLife LIVE: Navigation

21+ event, 6:00-10:00 pm

Live performances by BadBadNotGood and Saint Pepsi
DJ set by Mophono and Citizen Ten (Change the Beat)
Art exhibited by Make Big Art and curated by Betty Bigas
Music presented by Treasure Island Music Festival

Walk, run, rideshare, or bike to NightLife LIVE this week as we explore the many ways to get where you’re going.

Catch the live SF debut of BadBadNotGood and hear just why their jazz interpretations of hip hop tracks have landed them supporting spots for the likes of Frank Ocean and Tyler, the Creator of Odd Future.

Recognized for their continuous, one-take album recordings, they’ll soon release a collaboration with Wu-Tang’s Ghostface Killah that’s got both the jazz and hip hop worlds abuzz with anticipation.

Plus, check out Saint Pepsi (sounds refreshing, right?), the freak-pop brainchild of 21-year-old musician Ryan DeRobertis.

Meet artists Julia Russotti, Serena Elston, and Tyson Ayers, the creative minds behind the NightLife LIVE installment of Make Big Art, a collaborative project that brings together the brightest hands in salvaged art, as they show off a prototype ship model from the famed Ghosthip Party.

Get outside yourself with an immersive, virtual maze by Outerbody Labs.

Got a thing for maps? Check out antique charts and navigation equipment with Schein and Schein Maps, and make take-home coasters out of vintage maps with SCRAP.

Preparing to head over the bridge to Treasure Island? Get a sneak peek at festival vendors, including artistically-inclined concert poster artists.

Plus, learn how to navigate a natural disaster and pick up need-to-know safety tips from the SF Fire Department's Neighborhood Emergency Response Team.

Mix and mingle with City of SF officials, the bright minds behind SF72.org, on the eve of the Loma Prieta earthquake’s 25th anniversary and learn how to stay prepared for the next “big one.”

21+ Event, ID required for entry.

Note: The 4-story Rainforest exhibit closes at 7:45pm and planetarium passes are distributed to visitors on a first-come first-served basis. Special programs and lectures may have limited seating and admission will also be made available to visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.

Buy Tickets

RSVP on Facebook

 

 
Earthquake

Planetarium

Enjoy the following planetarium shows this week at NightLife:

6:30 pm
Universe Update

Take a tour of the Universe with a sprinkling of the hottest news stories from astronomy and the space sciences! Ryan Wyatt, Director of the Morrison Planetarium, pilots you through the stars and beyond the galaxies, explaining the latest space headlines in easily-digestible terms, and returns you safely to Earth in less than an hour.

7:30 & 8:30 pm
Earthquake: Evidence of a Restless Planet
Excite your senses with a visually stunning planetarium show that journeys through the San Andreas fault, delves into the Earth's core and explores the seismic science of earthquakes throughout our world.

Note: Passes to planetarium shows are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.

VIP tour on Living Roof, gem and mineral collection, students and reasearchers in the lab

Food

A variety of food options are available each week at NightLife from 6-9:30pm.

Academy Cafe, Level 1 (across from Rainforest)
Sit and enjoy bites and drinks crafted by San Francisco’s renowned chef Charles Phan. Special guest DJs rotating weekly.

Academy Cafe Food Cart, Lobby
Grab small bites on the go.

The Moss Room, Lower Level (enter at Academy Cafe)
Sit and enjoy an artisan cocktail or variety of local beers and wines with bites from the cafe.
For large groups, please dial:
415.876.6121

 
Earthquake exhibit, baby ostrich

Drink

"Dance Party NightLife" Cocktail Tour

Each week, enjoy a different fresh seasonal "Craft on Draft" cocktail at each bar area. Please note: All bars accept cash and credit cards.

Check out this week's cocktail tour menu designed by our resident mixologist Shane McKnight!

EARTHQUAKE BAR
"LIVE" MOSCOW MULE
Absolut Vodka, Mixi’s “LIVE” handcrafted ginger beer, saffron bitters & fresh lime

&

OUTBREAK SCOTCH BAR featuring:
Highland Park 12yr Single Malt Scotch, Mascallan 12yr Single Malt Scotch, Cutty Sark Prohibition Blend Scotch, Balvenie Doublewood 12yr, GlenLivet 12yr

PLANETARIUM BAR
ROOT BEER SAZERAC
Bulleit Rye Whiskey, Clandestine Absinthe, Ristretto Espresso Liqueur, Root Beer Bitters & orange peel

SWAMP BAR
MOONSTRUCK PEACH TEA
Ole’ Smoky Peach Moonshine, Ole’ Smoky White Lightnin’, Darjeeling Sun Tea, lemon juice, local honey, sliced peaches & fresh mint

&

NIGHTLIFE CRAFT BREW SPECIALS:
Pac Brew Imperial IPA
Pac Brew Squid Ink IPA

AQUARIUM BAR
RUBY BASIL COLLINS
Basil infused Absolut Vodka, Campari, ruby grapefruit juice, lemon juice, soda & a pinch of hibiscus infused Himalayan Pink Salt

3RD FLOOR / LIVING ROOF BAR
HOUSE-MADE G&T
Plymouth Gin with Mixi's Handcrafted Basil & Grapefruit Tonic made with real bark of the Cinchona Tree

VIP tour on Living Roof, gem and mineral collection, students and reasearchers in the lab

NightLife VIP Tour

Want an entirely different NightLife experience? Join us on our NightLife VIP Tour.

Tickets include:

  • Admission to NightLife with express entry
  • One-hour behind-the-scenes tour with a private viewing of the Academy's renowned gem and mineral collection
  • Open bar in a reserved cocktail area prior to the tour
  • Meet and greet with Academy researchers in the project lab
  • VIP access to the Rainforest, and a reserved pass for the 8:30 Planetarium show

$59/person – limited tickets available each week

6pm - 8pm (event ends at 10 pm)

For tickets and details, please click here.

 
NightLife visitors enjoying cocktails, bar, NightLife Private Lounge

NightLife Private Lounge

Looking for a great space to celebrate landing that big account, throw a birthday party, or just gather with all your old friends, all while enjoying San Francisco’s most exciting Thursday night event?  Rent out the NightLife Private Lounge. You’ll get early access to a premium private room with catering and bar service and access to our Thursday NightLife event.

For more booking information contact David Nemoyten at (415) 379-5499 or dnemoyten@calacademy.org.

 
Morrison Planetarium earthquake visualization

NightLife Group Bookings

Click here to buy NightLife tickets for a group of 10 or more people.


Connect with NightLife

   

#CASNightLife

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Next NightLife Event

   

10/2/2014 - "Dance Party NightLife"

Buy Tickets

 

RSVP on Facebook

Upcoming Events

   

10/23/14 - "Eclipse NightLife NightLife"

10/30/14 - "Creatures of the NightLife"

Buy Tickets

 

Maps & Directions

   

Map

Click here for information about how to get to the Academy plus parking and safety tips.

NightLife Sponsorship

   

Thank you for your interest in sponsoring NightLife. For inquiries, please contact:

sponsorship@calacademy.org

NightLife Inquiries

   

If you’re interested in performing or presenting at Nightlife, please contact nbooking@calacademy.org.

Please direct general questions or feedback to nightlife@calacademy.org.

What our Visitors Say

   

Nightlife has always been a very entertaining and new experience everytime I have been. Whether from the crazy Dinosaur Burlesque show to seeing Fitz & The Tantrums at the Nightlife Gala I never know.

- Zanni D.

The exhibits are beautifully maintained. Our NightLife visit included a back-of-the-scenes tour. Staff is very knowledgeable and friendly.

- Nina S.

NightLife is great! Fun and informational events, delicious drinks, good music and great company has been my experience thus far.

- Michael A.

At NightLife, I get a kick out of seeing adults experiment with the exhibits. I've been many times and still have not seen everything. Planetarium is up next!

- Michael A.

The Academy is one of those places that gives you both an educational and entertaining experience and the NightLife is such a fun event!

- Barbara C.

I love NightLife at the California Academy of Sciences because no matter how many times I go, I always find something new to learn.

- Gaby B.

Visited on a Thursday night and did the VIP package. Nice to have a private group tour with a separate area for food and beverage and express entrance to the Planetarium.

- Bill K.

NightLife really is the coolest place in town on Thursdays. Great place to take first dates, groups of friends and out-of-towners.

- Kelly B.

The crowd is happy, fun, no-drama type people. You get good food, good drinks, and great DJ's. If you want to go out and have real fun, this is the place to do it.

- Tracey M.

NightLife is the best thnig going on in the city. You have interesting and unique experiences with every visit.

- Tracey M.