PaleoFest 2023

PaleoFest 2023

March 3-5

Join us as Burpee Museum celebrates 25 years of PaleoFest, with research talks from paleontologists around the world, and special activities and programming! 

Dino-lovers, rock collectors, and fossil diggers unite for an internationally attended festival. Our audience includes scientists and researchers, aspiring scientists, students, and paleo-lovers, and even dino-loving kiddos! Many of the talks will focus on our speakers' cutting edge research and amazing new discoveries. 

Not Just for Professional Scientists

Students, interested community members, and aspiring scientists are encouraged to join the experts as they share stories, research, and experiences. It is a great opportunity to make connections and become inspired!

Not ready for the lectures? Families can still enjoy hands-on workshops, lectures for children, and activities for families throughout our museum...paleo science is presented in a fun, big way.

Family Fun

Bring your best dino roar and paleo costume, and jump into so many fun ways to win contests. Learn about prehistoric animals and explore the halls of Burpee!

Note: Children ages 4-12 must be accompanied by an adult.


Preregistration may be done online through eventbrite, or by calling Burpee's visitor services department (815-965-3433). Walk-ins are welcome to attend as well.

Additional parking will be available at the Goodwill located at 850 N Church St, Rockford, IL 61103

Doors open at 8am Saturday & Sunday. Breakfast and lunch will be available for purchase from Mary's Market.   Made From Scratch – Mary's Market – Cafe & Bakery

Discover Card
Fossil Day CTA
Purchase Tickets

Preregister for this special event!

General Admission, A La Cart, PaleoPackages, Dinner Tickets, & Lecture Tickets

Jane Exhibit
Sponsor PaleoFest 2023

Help Make 2023 A Success

Reach a large group of local families, scientists, and many from abroad!

PaleoFest Family Track
Special PaleoActivities

Family Fun!

Special learning, exhibit tours, and activities throughout the museum. Add-on workshops, classes, and more!

Research Talks

New Research

Talks about cutting edge Paleo Research. Students, interested community members, and aspiring scientists are encouraged to join the experts!

Steve Brusatte
Member's Night

Dr. Steve Brusatte

Join us for a special event just for members!

Hoffman House
Keynote Dinner

Hoffman House

A wonderful dinner with other science enthusiasts and museum supporters!

Student Symposium

Meet the Scientists

Opening up the research conversation for K-12 budding scientists!

Speaker Schedule

Purchase Tickets
Hotel Availability
Need to reserve a hotel room?

Burpee Museum has partnered with Holiday Inn to reserve hotel rooms for this special event! Room rate is $90 per night and registration will close one month before PaleoFest. Note: The link does not work on mobile devices.

Location: Holiday Inn 7550 East State Street, Rockford, IL 61108

Reserve a Room

Holiday Inn® Hotels | Book Family Friendly Hotels Worldwide | Official Site

Ticket Options
Science Talks & Lectures

Check out our lecture passes! There will be different speakers on Saturday and Sunday with a full slate of awesome research. You can purchase a one day pass or the full weekend day pass. All lecture passes include general admission to the full museum.

A special paleo celebration dinner and research talk features our keynote presenter. The keynote is not included in the day lecture pass. Best Deal = PaleoPackage. This gets you all the daytime speakers plus the keynote and dinner.

Just Stopping By

With a general admission only ticket, you will enjoy a museum full of awesome exhibits plus several special PaleoFest-only stations and temporary interactive exhibits.

Enhance your Family Visit

Walking through the museum on PaleoFest is very special, but upgrade your fun with a hands-on workshop!  Geared at paleo-loving youth, these workshops feature science experimentation, activities, small group learning, art training, and even a family friendly research lecture from one of our visiting scientists. Don't miss the variety of these special add-on.

PaleoFest History
About Burpee Museum's PaleoFest

Since 1999, PaleoFest has become an internationally recognized and respected program that celebrates the science of Paleontology. PaleoFest is an exemplar program to excite, educate, and inspire all people in science. This 3-day event includes many educational programs and activities for all levels of interest in paleontology. Each year, PaleoFest attracts nearly 2,000 visitors and some of the biggest names in the field.