The Museum of Western Colorado is located between Denver and Salt Lake City. It is the area's largest multi-disciplinary museum. There are three major facilities at the museum which are the educational center, three outdoor paleontology sites and a research library. There are also a number of programs offered that feature tours and expeditions of a number of varieties. There are over a thousand visitors to the museum each year which include students from kindergarten to the twelfth grade.
The American Association of Museums accredited the Museum of Western Colorado during 1971. The museum which is located at 462 Ute Avenue has different hours for the summer and the winter. The facility opens at 9am and closes at 5pm Monday through Saturday from May 1 to September 30 for the summer. From October 1 until April 30 the facility is closed on Sunday and Monday. The facility opens at 10am and closes at 3pm on Tuesday through Saturday.
Members of the Museum of Western Colorado are admitted to the facilities at no cost. The charge for adults is $5.50, $4.50 for seniors and $3.00 for those ages three to twelve. Family groups are admitted for $16.00. The facility has rental space available for various functions; cost of rentals varies depending on the status of those renting it. The facility should be contacted directly to confirm admission charges since they are subject to change.
The museum offers a number of outreach and educational programs for local schools. Programs include archaeology of the grand valley, casing a dinosaur and geology of western Colorado. The programs go over life before dinosaurs, mammals in North America and several programs including pictures, rocks, minerals and toys. There are also a number of loan materials available from the museum. Materials can be gotten for a week at no costs to visitors borrowing them.
The materials that can be borrowed from the Museum of Western Colorado include an antique toy truck, birds of prey and the history of cattle in Colorado. Other materials cover the gold rush, a dinosaur box, fossil box and the history of Grand Valley. Tours and programs can be scheduled by contacting the museum directly. There are also a number of education programs available on site at the facility.
Early life in the area of Grand Valley can be experienced at the Cross Orchards Historic Site. The Dinosaur Journey facility in Fruita allows visitors to explore the world and history of dinosaurs through a number of interactive exhibits and fossil digs. There is a combination of three museums in the Museum of the West that includes the Loyd Files Research Library and the Smith Educational Tower in addition to the Museum of Western Colorado itself.
Those that wish to rent the facilities at the Museum of Western Colorado should contact the museum directly for reservation, rate and amenity information. Directions to the Museum of Western Colorado, specific details about the programs, tours and availability of lending materials from the facility can also be obtained by contacting the facility directly.