Aurora Fossil MuseumAurora Fossil Museum
The Aurora Fossil Museum, founded in 1976, is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) science education resource center. Our mission is to increase knowledge of the geology, paleontology, and prehistory of coastal North Carolina in an engaging and enjoyable manner. We accomplish this mission through exhibits, interactive inquiry-based activities, outreach programs, events, field studies, and involvement in the annual Fossil Festival held on Memorial Day weekend.
The main museum houses a wide variety of Miocene and Pliocene marine fossils with most displays showcasing specimens collected from the neighboring Nutrien Phosphate Mine (formerly known as Texas Gulf Sulfur, PCS Phosphate, PotashCorp). Featured in our shark hall are the remnants of the terror of the Miocene-Pliocene seas, C. megalodon!
The Learning Center houses a world class collection of gems and minerals as well as a fluorescent mineral room. Also located in the Learning Center are a collection of fossils from around the world including Cambrian trilobites and the remnants of the Ice Age Mastodon!
Directly across the street from the main museum is our Fossil Park. Within the park are our own fossil pits, affectionately dubbed the “Pits of the Pungo”. These pits, consisting of fossiliferous material donated by the neighboring Nutrien Phosphate plant, offer visitors the opportunity to search and discover their very own Miocene age fossils! In these fossiliferous pits, one may discover the remains of ancient sharks, whales, bony fish, and coral just to name a few. Spend the day being a Paleontologist! Bring a garden trowel, sifter, plastic bags, and take home a piece of the past!