23rd Annual Midcontinent Paleobotanical Colloquium

March 10-12, 2006
Florida Museum of Natural History
University of Florida
Gainesville, Florida

Co-sponsored by the Florida
Paleontological Society and features a keynote
address by Kirk Johnson

Program | Abstracts | View Submitted Abstracts | Logistics | Registration | Lodging | Transportation | Location | Parking |

The Midcontinent Paleobotanical Colloquium (MPC) is held on a different campus each year, providing an informal forum for paleobotany students and professors to meet with others interested in fossil plants for social interaction and exchange of information and ideas. For background and historical overview of the MPC, including its occasional drift to the extreme margins of the North American "midcontinent", see http://oak.cats.ohiou.edu/~rothwell/MPC/index.htm.

This year's meeting, co-hosted by the Florida Paleontological Society (FPS) and the Gainesville Paleobotany and Palynology Group*, will be held at the University of Florida Campus in Gainesville, Florida. Welcome and registration will be in the lobby of Dickinson Hall, Friday afternoon through Saturday morning. Friday evening at 6:30 pm, we will have an informal barbeque dinner in the Dickinson Hall courtyard. During the day on Saturday, there will be a full program of fossil plant lectures and posters dealing with various aspects of fossil plants and their applications in geological and biological research. A field trip to Eocene quarries yielding fossil sea grass remains is planned for Sunday.


Friday (March 10), Afternoon and Evening (Dickinson Hall, at Museum Rd and Newell Dr.)

  • Open house--visit the paleobotany laboratory and collections in Dickinson Hall. Check in at local hotels begins at 1:30 pm.
  • Registration begins in Dickinson Hall at 4:00 pm. Current research projects will be on exhibit.
  • Contributed posters may be set up on Friday afternoon and will be taken down Saturday before dinner.
  • Informal barbeque dinner on the patio of Dickinson Hall at 6:30 pm.

Saturday (March 11): (Physics auditorium - Room 1002, walking distance from Dickinson Hall)

  • Morning and afternoon (Physics auditorium, near Dickinson Hall):
    1. Oral presentations, morning through afternoon.
    2. Lunch is open, with a nearby campus cafeteria suggested.
    3. Poster presentations and discussion time is planned for the afternoon.
  • Evening (Paramount Plaza Hotel, and Bivens North Lake house):
    1. 5:30 pm Bivens North Lake house, mixer
    2. 6:30 pm banquet at the Paramount Plaza Hotel
    3. 7:30 pm Evening lecture: The Green River Paleobotany Project by Kirk Johnson (Denver Museum of Nature and Science).

Sunday (March 12):

  • Optional field trips to visit Eocene limestone quarries from which sea grass impressions have been recovered and to local natural areas to view extant flora and fauna.


For those who can stay longer, please join us for the Advances in Paleobotany Conference, convening Sunday evening and continuing through Wednesday evening, March 15. This conference, celebrating the contributions of David Dilcher and Jack Wolfe, will include symposia on Mesozoic and Cenozoic paleobotany and a range of contributed papers and posters from both US and international colleagues. Click here for more information.


Due on February 15, 2006. Please use this format (word or pdf) to compose your abstract. Please send your abstract to Judy Chen at judychen@ufl.edu as email attachment.

Please click here to view submitted abstract to MPC.


The cost of the meeting is $35 for students and $65 for professionals. This includes registration, dinner on Friday and Saturday, and refreshments Saturday morning and afternoon. Breakfasts and Lunch on Saturday are not included. There is no cost to participate in the Sunday excursion.
Registration payment should be postmarked by February 15, 2006. Payment should be in the form of a check or money order in US dollars made out to GAINESVILLE PALEOFEST (credit cards NOT accepted). If you are also attending ADVANCES IN PALEOBOTANY, a three-day program of symposia, contributed papers and posters and social events, celebrating the achievements of Jack A. Wolfe and David L. Dilcher, you may submit a single check with the combined registration total for both events (please e-mail Hongshan Wang, if you intend to participate, so that we include you in the advance count of participants expected for receptions and banquets).

Please download the registration form here in PDF or word format and send the form and your payment to:

Hongshan Wang
PO 117800
FLMNH, Dickinson Hall
Gainesville, FL 32611-7800


Nearby hotels along SW 13th street, south of the university campus, range from $45 to $79. "Hobo housing" may also be arranged by request for visiting grad students to stay overnight at the homes of local faculty and students.

For Paramount Plaza Hotel at the Lake, the guaranteed (discounted) room rate is $79 for both single and double occupancy. They do not have a way for registering for group discount on line. Please call the hotel directly to reserve your room at 877-992-9229 (Toll free in the US; e-mail: reservations@paramountplaza.com). Be sure to mention "Paleofest" and the guaranteed rate mentioned above.

These hotels are served by a direct city bus line to the Museum (Bus #13 runs every 15 min. Disembark at Dickinson Hall, at the corner of Museum Rd and Newell Dr.), and are 15-25 minutes by walking to the Museum.

Please reserve directly with the hotels:

  • Comfort Inn, 13th St.: 352-373-6500. 10 minutes walking distance to Paramount conference center.
  • Florida Motel: 352-376-3742. Older small motel with less expensive rooms. 5 minutes walking distance to Paramount conference center.
  • Rush Lake Motel. Ten minutes walking distance to the Museum (Dickinson Hall). Phone: 1-888-787-4525 or 352-373-5000. 15 minutes walking distance to Paramount Conference Center.
  • Bambi Motel: 1-800-342-2624 or 352-376-2622. Older small motel with less expensive rooms. 15 minutes walking distance to Paramount Conference Center and the Museum.


The Florida Museum of Natural History is situated on the University of Florida campus in Gainesville, a few miles east from Interstate Highway 75. Gainesville regional airport is served by Delta and US Air airlines. The closest larger airport hub is Jacksonville, Florida (JAX), about 1.5 hours driving from Gainesville.

If you arrive to the Gainesville airport (GNV), we will arrange free transportation to and from the airport (please let us know your arrival date and time). Those arriving to Jacksonville or Orlando are requested to cover the additional expense of ground transportation to Gainesville. We are prepared to make two or three round trips to JAX with the museum van for pickups in the late morning and afternoon of Friday, March 12. If you desire to be included in this informal shuttle service please let us know as soon as possible your flight number and arrival time.

Those considering car rental from JAX or Orlando may wish to consider AVIS, which has a drop off and pick up counter conveniently situated at our host hotel, the Gainesville Paramount Plaza. [When making reservations, request theState of Florida--University of Florida rate for a significant discount].

Shuttle service from Jacksonville or Orlando airport may also be arranged directly with the service providers by the participants. For example Runways Transportation Company provide one way ($35/passenger and $52/two passengers) or round trip ($60/passenger and $90/two passengers) service between Jacksonville and Gainesville.


The Florida Museum of Natural History is situated on the University of Florida campus in Gainesville, a few miles east from Interstate Highway 75. Gainesville regional airport is served by Delta and US Air airlines. The closest larger airport hub is Jacksonville, Florida (JAX), about 1.5 hours driving from Gainesville.

Please be advised that the Florida Museum of Natural History has two buildings on opposite sides of the University of Florida Campus. Highway and local road signs for the Museum point to the exhibition building (Powell Hall) on the west side of the campus. However, our conference is centered at the research building (Dickinson Hall), located at the intersection of Museum Road and Newell Drive, near the east side of the campus.


Parking restrictions are lifted on weekends (after 4:30 p.m. on Friday afternoon), so parking during the meeting should not be a problem. Before 4:30 p.m. on Friday afternoon, visitor permits are available from checkpoints located throughout the campus, or from the University Police Department located at the southeast corner of Museum Road and Newell Drive. With visitor permits, meeting participants can park on level one in Parking Garage 4 which is located at the northeast corner of Museum Road and Newell Drive. The Florida Museum of Natural History is on the southwest corner with front entrance on the Museum Road. The following is a schematic map of the Museum, Parking Garage 4 and the University Police Department.

Click here to view or print a larger version of this map.

*The Gainesville Paleobotany and Palynology Group currently includes
David Dilcher, David Jarzen, Beth Kowalski, Steven Manchester, Terry Lott, Hongshan Wang, along with graduate students Judy Chen, Shusheng Hu, Paula Mejia, Elizabeth O'leary.

Paleobotany Division | Florida Museum of Natural History | University of Florida