Emilie Rusch

Mines Museum of Earth Science reopening to the public with new entrance, amenities, safety protocols

Reservations – and face masks – are required to visit the free museum, which reopens with limited hours Feb. 27
Renovated entrance to Mines Museum

The renovated entrance to the Mines Museum of Earth Science features a new gift shop and a reconfigured welcome desk with an amethyst countertop. (Photo by Aubrey Bradford/Colorado School of Mines)

The museum on the Colorado School of Mines campus will reopen to the public Saturday, Feb. 27 following a nearly yearlong closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Mines Museum of Earth Science will be open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Reservations are required and COVID-19 safety protocols are in place, including a limit of 10 visitors per floor per hour.

“We’re excited to finally reopen the doors of the museum to the public – with a completely renovated entrance, new exhibits and, yes, new protocols in place,” museum director Renata Lafler said. “We’ve been busy over the past year improving the museum experience for our guests – and that includes officially launching our new name, the Mines Museum of Earth Science, to better reflect our mission and one-of-a-kind collections dedicated to the earth sciences and Colorado’s mineral heritage.”

Among the most noticeable changes to the museum:

  • A brand-new museum store located at the museum’s entrance and a new welcome desk with an amethyst countertop
  • A new collection of mining artifacts donated by the family of Mines alumnus Frederick R. Dowsett Jr. ‘69
  • Expanded exhibits of Colorado minerals, including a new section dedicated to minerals from the Sweet Home Mine in Alma
  • New interactive activities for kids, including Find Blaster to win prizes

Also newly on display is a meteorite that was found in Colorado and weighs over 40 pounds. The donor used the H6 ordinary chondrite as a doorstop until its true nature was discovered – he found it in 1941 in a field that belonged to his family.

COVID-19 safety protocols in place

Visitors to the Mines Museum will be greeted by a comprehensive suite of COVID-19 protocols to ensure an enjoyable – and safe – visit for all.

  • Masks are required while inside the museum. No one will be admitted to the museum without a mask or appropriate facial covering. Children under the age of 3 are exempt.
  • Social distancing of at least 6 feet between visiting groups is required at all times. Groups/family units are limited to no more than 10 visitors total.
  • Flow through the museum is one way, with the path marked on the floor.
  • Certain exhibits, such as the walk-in Mine and Special Exhibits Room, will have additional restrictions on capacity posted at their entrances.

Visit the Mines Museum today

Home to one of Colorado’s two Goodwill moon rocks collected during the Apollo 17 mission, the Mines Museum of Earth Science traces its beginnings to 1874 with the collection of geologist Arthur Lakes and includes the historic Colorado State Mineral Collection created by the Bureau of Mines in the 1890s. The museum now serves as the state repository for Colorado’s mineral heritage and showcases the most extensive public collection of minerals from Colorado.

Free to the public, the museum is located at 1310 Maple St. in Golden. Current hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday-Saturday.

Reservations are required and valid for two hours upon entry to the museum. Reserve your tickets here. If you or any member of your party is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, please stay home and reschedule your visit for a time when you are fully recovered.

For more information about the Mines Museum, go to

Emilie Rusch

Emilie Rusch

Director of Communications
About Mines
Colorado School of Mines is a public R1 research university focused on applied science and engineering, producing the talent, knowledge and innovations to serve industry and benefit society – all to create a more prosperous future.