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13 July, 2011 |

Smithsonian Community Coral Reef to live on in Davenport, Iowa

Those sea creatures many of you crocheted for the Smithsonian Community Reef exhibit, part of the museum’s Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef exhibit, are no longer on display here in Washington, but we were delighted to hear that they will soon be back in public view! Jennifer Lindsay, the Smithsonian’s coordinator for the community reef, informed us that the exhibit is headed from the National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) to Davenport, Iowa, where it will be lovingly reinstalled for a five-year display at the Putnam Museum, a Smithsonian affiliate.

Jennifer says, “The Putnam Museum plans to resurrect as close a replica as possible of the Smithsonian Community Reef just outside their Ocean Experience exhibit hall, where it will be used to teach thousands of school-aged visitors about the importance of ocean conservation. We are all incredibly excited that this spectacular piece, initially made possible by our partners—Quiksilver Foundation, the Embassy of Australia, and the Coral Reef Alliance and, of course, by the generosity, dedication, creativity and enthusiasm of all of you—will live on to delight and educate new audiences. I do not think any of us could have dreamed when we started this of a more wonderful outcome for all of our crocheted corals, and I am indebted to the energetic and tireless staff in the Office of Exhibits at NMNH, the Putnam Museum, and the Institute for Figuring for making an ongoing display of our community’s creation a reality!”

Check out and for details of the Putnam Museum’s installation and exhibition dates. Jennifer says the Smithsonian will also be capturing some of your stories of making the Smithsonian Community Reef on the NMNH website. If you would like to submit your story or photo, you can contact Jennifer at

Part of the Tangled Skein community's contribution to the reef

Part of our reef contribution