About Us

The Museum and Gardens are part of the University of Texas at El Paso, and also serve the binational community of the Chihuahuan Desert region. The Museum was established in 1936 and the Gardens were dedicated in 1999. The Museum’s permanent exhibits focus on the natural and cultural history of the Chihuahuan Desert region. The extensive stored collections of the Centennial are available for scholarly research. In the temporary galleries, the Museum presents a wide range of exhibits on themes related to border life and culture, the Americas, and UTEP activities. Read more about the Museum's history. For more information on coming exhibitions, visit our events calendar*.

The Centennial Museum and Gardens sponsor such events as lectures/talks, collaborative exhibits with other museums on campus or in El Paso, FloraFEST and SunSCAPE.

FloraFEST and SunSCAPE are annual events promoting the region's native plants. FloraFEST takes place every year on the last weekend in April, with a presentation on native plants on Friday night, followed by a sale of native plants on Saturday and Sunday. SunSCAPE is a multi-day seminar about using native plants in landscaping. This event occurs during the first quarter of each year. Email for upcoming information.

Our volunteers make it possible to provide such events.

We have several Virtual Tours available* to introduce you to our Museum. To appreciate the full breadth and depth of the Museum's offerings, consider visiting us in person.

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**We are currently upgrading our web presence, and have replaced the Museum's prior Home Page with the current version. Some links to detailed information point to pages which have not yet been migrated from their prior format.

Hours of Operation & Contact Information

  • Open, Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 am to 4:30 pm 
    Admission is Always Free
  • Closed on University Holidays and UTEP home football game days 
  • Permits can only be obtained from the Museum Offices located inside the Centennial Museum
  • The Chihuahuan Desert Gardens are open daily, dawn to dusk
  • General Contact Information: 
  • Artifact Research Inquiries: 
    • Scott Cutler, Museum Curator      
    • Telephone: 915-747-6668 
Museum and Gardens Staff

Maribel Villalva
  Education Curator
Kaye Mullins

Museum Curator

Samantha Winer

Garden Curator

John White
Dr. Art Harris
Barb Bailey
Administrative Assistant
Cynthia M. Ortiz

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