One doesn’t have to be a scientist to find fossils or other artifacts, but identifying them is a different story.  The East Tennessee State University and General Shale Natural History Museum and Visitors Center at the Gray Fossil Site will assist the public in identifying such specimens as a part of “Fossil and Artifact ID Night.”

On Tuesday, October 28, from 4-6 p.m., the community is invited bring fossils, rocks, minerals, and artifacts to be identified and photographed by the museum’s team of experts. Light refreshments will be served.

“Several scientists will be at the museum to help identify finds. Our scientists have backgrounds ranging from paleontology, archaeology and geology,” said Brett Woodward, collections manager for the museum. “Because we have scientists with different interests and areas of expertise, we are able to better identify more types of specimens.  We enjoy seeing what visitors bring to ‘Fossil & Artifact ID Night.’ It really helps us to better understand our region’s past.”

The museum cannot appraise fossils or artifacts.

The museum continually showcases the 5-million-year-old site and its unique ecosystem. Visitors are invited to observe live excavations in May through October. There are also many special events held at the Museum, such as the monthly “Speaker Series,”  “Fossil & Artifact ID Nights” every other month, and many ongoing youth programs.

The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. -5:00 p.m. located 1.8 miles off Exit 13 on Interstate 26. For more information, or for special assistance, call (866) 202-6223 or visit the museum at www.etsu.edu/naturalhistorymuseum.