New mural part of upgrades at area science museum

Hannah Brown
Kiowa County Signal
Jerry "Doc Rock" Simmons works in the Ice Age Room, which is under construction. A new mural was recently completed at the Heart of America Resource Center near Haviland.

The Heart of America Science Resource Center, located on HWY 54 just east of Haviland, has a massive new mural to show off to guests when they visit. The mural, painted by Joe Taylor of Crosbyton, Texas, is eight feet tall and 41 feet long. 

“From the inception of the Heart of America Science Museum back in 2013 I have had the desire to more fully show and express more clearly what the post-flood biblical Ice Age was like,” said Jerry “Doc Rock” Simmons, Vice President of HOASRC. “In 2018 I talked to Joe about doing a big project for us. Shortly thereafter we discussed the most recent secular and biblical archaeological findings and agreed upon a scene showing what is being found.”

The mural depicts a pre-Native American Ice Age family. The family resides in a cave which is very similar to a cave found west of Salina in the Horse Thief Canyon of Kanopolis Lake. The scene shows 12 people, from a newborn baby to a grandma and grandpa. Some of those twelve people are fighting off a mastodon near the entrance of the cave. There are several different things being depicted in the scene. 

The mural is located in the center of the Heart of America Science Resource Center in an elongated octagon room. 

“Once you step into the room you immediately get the sense that you are in a big cave and the mural scene quickly tells you the story,” said Simmons. 

“The Ice Age Room” as the room is referred to, is one of a few focal points of the Biblical message the museum is trying to convey to local residents, as well as those in the region or those traveling on the busy highway. 

The mural is part of a larger display of fossils of mammoth teeth, mammoth trusts, and other Ice Age animals. These items have all been found in Kiowa County. 

For Joe Taylor, his favorite part of this process was a specific scene. 

“My favorite part was painting the mother and baby and the massive Mastodon because it shows that people of the Ice Age were like us,” said Taylor. “I have studied these incredible mastodons for years and have loved working with the one in the mural.” 

Taylor says the mural is a story of everyday life of those that lived before us. It’s special because most people don’t know many of the details surrounding that time period. 

The mural can be viewed at the Heart of America Science Resource Center located at 312 East US HWY 54/400. For more information on the museum, visit their Facebook page at Heart of America Science Resource Center, or at