August 1, 2016

New Hampshire Rocks

By Danica Melone, Marketing Intern

Can you name all of New Hampshire’s common rock types- besides granite? Geology may not be the most thrilling topic you studied in grade school, but it most definitely holds some eye-opening information about our past, present, and future that you might have overlooked as a kid. If you’ve ever visited the Science Center’s New Hampshire Geology exhibit, you might have discovered more about what rocks offer us humans besides the Old Man of the Mountain (God rest his soul.) If you haven’t seen it- here’s an article about why the New Hampshire Geology Exhibit is the bee’s knees.

To begin, the Geology exhibit is located near the amphitheater, making it either a treat for the end of the trip, or easily accessible to visit at the beginning for a few minutes. You’ll notice upon approaching, a long stone pathway from the entrance stretches to the back of the open-air exhibit. The cobbled path features small placards from start to finish, marking the path with a literal timeline of Earth’s existence, based on information scientists have gathered from rocks! Toward the end, the last foot and half, you’ll find yourself completely in awe at the visualization of just how much occurred in the last couple thousand years… like humans beginning to walk the Earth!

There are other interactive displays for guests to learn about the many important aspects of rocks. There is an interactive display board defining numerous uses for rocks in New Hampshire; massive rocks, or mountains in this example, are integral in developing weather and climate patterns in the region, while smaller rocks may make great homes for cliff swallows and other species. In all, the display helps adults and children visualize the importance of rocks from big mountains to small as sand.

The last, and more popular part of the exhibit, is the native New Hampshire rock garden. A small sign identifies the native rock types while almost a dozen small boulders protrude from the soil behind it. This is a hot spot for family photo action; most kids (and hey, adults too) love climbing on the rocks to look silly for a picture. However, the rock garden is a great opportunity to look closely at these native rocks' characteristics. Regardless of your reason for visiting the New Hampshire Geology exhibit, you are sure to exit with a stronger appreciation for the purpose rocks serve in New Hampshire.

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