GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The Florida Museum of Natural History is calling collectors of all ages to show off their treasures at the 41st annual Collectors Day on Jan. 11, 2020, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Jay Beckenbach stands with his bonsai collection.
Jay Beckenbach displays some of his bonsai collection at the Florida Museum’s 2014 Collectors Day. ©Florida Museum photo by Kristen Grace

Many long-time participants like bonsai collector Jay Beckenbach will attend this year’s event. Beckenbach has displayed his nearly 25-year-old collection of little trees in little pots at Collectors Day for about 20 years.

“I enjoy the hobby and like to share with people at Collectors Day, especially the kids,” Beckenbach said.

To register as one of the more than 100 collectors who attend each year, pick up a form at the museum’s front desk, or complete the online registration form at Registration for the event is free and must be completed no later than Dec. 28.

Attendance to the event is free and open to the public. Guests are invited to explore collections ranging from microscopes to potato mashers at the museum’s longest-running public program.

Carter Gilbert discussing his postage stamp collection.
Carter Gilbert discusses his postage stamp collection with a visitor during the 40th Collectors Day in 2019. ©Florida Museum photo by Kristen Grace

“Collectors Day is a local tradition,” said Florida Museum educator Tiffany Ireland. “Our collectors are an amazing representation of the people in our area, so we invite everyone to come discover these unique and fascinating collections.”

The Florida Museum created Collectors Day to recognize the importance of collections in research. The museum is home to one of the country’s largest collections, with more than 40 million specimens.

For more information about the event, visit or call 352-273-2061.


Writer: Gillian Sweeney, 352-273-2032,
Source: Tiffany Ireland, 352-273-2061,
Media contact: Paul Ramey, APR, 352-273-2054,