About the Museum
Plan Your Visit
Check out current exhibits and daily programs, find directions, rates, hours and more.
Teach & Learn
Lifelong learning starts here! Explore teacher trainings, memorable field trips and unique school programs.
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Make an Impact
Volunteer, become a member or donate to support arts, education, wildlife and more.
History & Art
Otters, porcupines, owls, oh my! Encounter wildlife up close, explore the history and culture of the wild West and take in beautiful art. The High Desert Museum is a cultural gem set on 135 acres of awe. It’s no wonder visitors voted us one of the best things to do in Bend Oregon!
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Indigenous filmmakers are breaking barriers in true cinematic storytelling, and more are getting behind the camera to share their own stories. Discover how this work is continuing storytelling traditions at the Indigenous Filmmakers Panel on Thursday, April 6. LaRonn Katchia (Warm Springs, Wasco, Paiute), Brutis Baez (Wasco, Paiute, Warm Springs) and other Native filmmakers will (more…)
10:00 am - 11:00 am
Come on an adventure! Children ages 3-5 and their caregivers investigate science, art, music, stories and culture in a fun, hands-on manner. Don backpacks filled with exciting objects while journeying through the Museum’s nature trails and exhibits. New themes weekly! APRIL 12 – BOOK NOW Magnified Adventures Looking through a magnifier makes the world look (more…)
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
A quieter time for children and adults who experience physical, intellectual and/or social disabilities to enjoy the High Desert Museum after hours. Explore the Museum’s newest exhibits and revisit your favorites. Sensory packs are available to borrow with headphones, fidgets and more. Free for individuals, friends and family With support from Mark and Kathy Kralj (more…)
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Renowned educator and activist Patricia Whitefoot (Yakama Nation) and Valerie Switzler (Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs) will discuss how Plateau tribes are passing on Indigenous knowledge and traditions to future generations. Videos and other visuals will aid in telling stories of intergenerational learning and youth engagement. Learn how you can support current advocacy efforts (more…)
10:00 am - 11:00 am
Come on an adventure! Children ages 3-5 and their caregivers investigate science, art, music, stories and culture in a fun, hands-on manner. Don backpacks filled with exciting objects while journeying through the Museum’s nature trails and exhibits. New themes weekly! APRIL 19 – BOOK NOW Fox Trot Several types of foxes live in the High (more…)
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Central Oregon is known as a migration pathway for western monarch butterflies, but over 100 different butterfly species also call this region home. Please join Amanda Egertson, stewardship director at the Deschutes Land Trust, to learn about this insect’s life history, their seasonal and overwintering patterns and what people can do to support healthy (more…)
Under the Snow
In the depth of winter, a deep layer of snow quiets the High Desert’s forests. But under the surface, a secret world comes to life. Under the Snow dives into the snow, where voles, shrews, insects and porcupines build a matrix of tunnels to survive the winter and hide from the predators that lurk just above the surface.
Culture, Art, History
Creations of Spirit
"Creations of Spirit" is a one-of-a-kind, celebratory experience featuring the stories of living works of art from seven Indigenous artists. Videos, audio and large projections will immerse visitors in the landscapes and communities in which these objects are used, highlighting the theme of artwork as alive, full of stories and created for specific purposes and people.
In the Arena
Through the lens of San Francisco Bay Area photographer Gabriela Hasbun, this exhibit documents the exhilarating atmosphere of the Bill Pickett Invitational Rodeo—the only touring Black rodeo in the country—and the showstopping style and skill of the Black cowboys and cowgirls who compete in it year after year.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services named the High Desert Museum as one of six recipients of the 2021 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities.
The Museum was recognized for providing dynamic programming and services through community outreach, working to create programs that offer rich educational programming and expand museum access.