After Dark: Sexplorations

Thursday, February 10, 2022 • 6:00–10:00 p.m. PT

Not a member yet? Join us and get free admission all year long!

Adults Only (18+)

Note: Free for members and donors—only a membership card and ID required for entry. The Tactile Dome is currently closed.

Looking for a hot night out on the town? Slip into something comfortable and take an intimate look at sex—you know, the transfer of genetic information through sperm and eggs, which has resulted in evolution and specialization among species over time. From the lengths we’ll go to for sex and the mating rituals of zebrafish to the naughty bits of flowers, learn from Exploratorium biologists about the varied and creative ways in which the natural world gets it on.

DJ Lady Ryan
From Hip Hop for Change

6:30–7:45 and 8:15–9:30 p.m.
Bechtel Gallery 3

Get ready to dance your way through the night as a DJ from Hip Hop for Change sets the vibe and keeps the party moving all night! Tonight, Lady Ryan brings her deep knowledge of multiple genres and a touch of nostalgia. She has opened for artists such as George Clinton, Erykah Badu, and Anderson Paak and has held long-standing residencies at some of the East Bay's most popular clubs and breweries. In 2016 she was awarded the East Bay Express “Best of the Bay” Readers’ Choice Award.

Sex Lives of Zebrafish
With Sonia Castillo

6:30 and 7:00 p.m.
Moore Gallery 4, Bio Bar

Delve into the sex lives of zebrafish, which sometimes need more than two to tango. Explore their mating behaviors and what it takes for the diminutive fish to spawn here at the Exploratorium.

Gonad A-Go-Go
With Xiran Liu

7:00, 8:00, and 9:00 p.m
Bechtel Gallery 3, Demo Station

Take an inside look at bull testicles, pig ovaries, and other impressively sized organs to track the paths of sperm and egg from genesis to union. 

The Bouquet Between Your Legs: Flower Dissections
With Paige Greenwood

7:30 and 8:30 p.m.
Moore Gallery 4, Demo Station

Flowers are key to some plants’ reproductive processes—and some of their reproductive structures bear a striking resemblance to our own. Strip flowers to their naughty bits and discover striking similarities to our own, and learn about pollination.

The Lengths We Go to for Sex
With Veronica Johnson

7:30 p.m.
Osher Gallery 1, Kanbar Forum

Organisms will go to great lengths to reproduce—literally. Ever wonder how far sperm travel before exiting the body? Take an intimate look at the anatomy of a familiar, er, member and find out how, as animals do what’s necessary to spread their genetic material, sometimes size really does matter.

Live Sex Show: Sea Urchin Egg Fertilization
With Sonia Castillo and Andrea Fusco

8:30 p.m.
Osher Gallery 1, Kanbar Forum

Do you like to watch? Sea urchin sperm and eggs are the same size and shape as those of humans, and it only takes an instant for the sperm to fertilize the egg. Which will be the lucky sperm? Find out as Exploratorium staff biologists Sonia Castillo and Andrea Fusco fertilize a sea urchin egg before your very eyes. \Which will be the lucky sperm?

Sexplorations Cinema
6:00–10:00 p.m.
Osher Gallery 1, Microcinema

In a sequence of short films, take a peep at the fascinating and sometimes funny ways in which sex has shaped the lives of humans and animals. Find out which reproduction myths persist in the absence of education, check out some of the startling shapes of animal genitalia, and more.

Endangered Species Condoms
6:00–10:00 p.m.
Bechtel Gallery 3

For the sake of the horned lizard . . . slow down, love wizard. Wrapped in colorful, wildlife-themed packages, endangered species condoms offer a fun, unique way to discuss the link between human population growth and the species extinction crisis.

Discern the Sperm
6:00–10:00 p.m.
Moore Gallery 4 

Organisms use sperm as DNA-delivery machines. Bulls do it, mice do it, even opossums. Why do some animals' sperm look so alike while others look so different? We’ll be looking at bull sperm and urchin sperm to tell you what to look for when trying to discern between sperms of different species.

Stink Bug Dollhouse
6:00–10:00 p.m.
Moore Gallery 4

Milkweed bugs can get it on for hours on end, literally: they mate by sticking their back ends together. Scientists think their stamina stems from competition; a male doesn’t want another bug’s sperm to outdo its own. Our dollhouse is a curtain free set-piece for a great big milkweed bug cuddle puddle that awaits the eyes of voyeurs. 

Food and drinks will be available to purchase and enjoy in our Seaglass Restaurant during After Dark. Please note that there is no drinking or eating allowed elsewhere in the museum at this time.

Curious about what to expect during your visit? Check out our current safety protocols and guidelines.