The Waterhouse Club is a major support group of the South Australian Museum and has just celebrated 30 years since its inception.
The Club offers access to the Museum’s scientists
The South Australian Museum’s scientists are at the centre of our Club’s program and their talents and exciting discoveries are showcased by the Club’s exceptional expeditions and events. The Club founded in 1987, is young in spirit and experimental in its diverse program.
For example, the recent 2019 Waterhouse Club Antarctic Expedition followed in the footsteps of two South Australians who, in addition to Sir Douglas Mawson, were very prominent in increasing our understanding of Antarctica. One was John Rymill from Penola in South Australia who led the British Graham Land Expedition (BGLE) to explore and map most of the Antarctica Peninsula and to conduct scientific observations and experiments (1934 – 1937). The other was Sir Hubert Wilkins who was a pioneer of polar aviation, being the first to fly across the Arctic from Alaska to Spitsbergen in April 1928, for which he was knighted.
We were privileged to have on board John Rymill’s son, Peter Rymill who guided us through the adventure, together with a team of highly specialised SA Museum scientists and ship’s guides.
The expedition was nothing short of an unforgettable success. The wildlife encounters were many and varied, with frequent sightings on shore excursions of Chinstrap, Gentoo and/or Adelie penguins. Other wildlife encountered were Crabeater and Weddell seals on ice floes and ashore, groups of Antarctic fur seals in a number of locations, a small group of elephant seals, and the magnificent Leopard seals – the region’s top predator.
Whales were everywhere – most were humpbacks, feeding up at the end of summer before starting their annual northward migration, but we also found orcas and minkes. The scenery was breathtaking with backdrops of icebergs, glaciers, islands, and mountains, viewed in everything from bright sunshine, through overcast skies to sunsets and moonlight. As an added bonus the weather, while obviously cold, was extraordinarily kind featuring many days of blue skies and calm seas.
Education, entertainment and travel.
The Club’s aims are to enlighten and have a good time – standards are high and events are staged with flair. Destinations are chosen for their scientific interest and beauty, often with privileged access. We aim to see the world through the multi-disciplined eyes of the Museum, which can be a life transforming experience.
Your kind of people
The Club’s objective is to provide a network of influential people to give support to The Museum through influence and raising money for the Museum Foundation. On joining, you can expect to be among people who are at a stage in life when they can take an interest in the natural world and let their curiosity flourish through access to authoritative knowledge.
Separate from the Waterhouse Club, the Museum has an excellent program of activities for families and children which is best accessed through Museum Membership.