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Record-breaking mountain climber, Monster Fish TV host and NFL cheerleader turned explorerheadline the 2017 National Geographic Live! Speaker Series at Perot Museum of Nature and Science; tickets now on sale 

Pioneer mountaineer Hilaree O’Neill, the first woman to climb the world’s first- and fourth-tallest peaks in 24 hours, to kick off the three-part lecture package Jan. 5; star of Nat Geo’s Monster Fish TV show Zeb Hogan on March 2 and Pink Boots and a Machete author Mireya Mayor on May 4 round out the series

Tickets are now on sale for the Perot Museum of Nature and Science’s 2017 National Geographic Live! Speaker Series, which kicks off Jan. 5 with record-breaking mountaineer Hilaree O’Neill, the first female to climb the world’s first- and fourth-tallest mountains in under 24 hours. The three-part series also will feature National Geographic Fellow and aquatic ecologist Zeb Hogan, host of Nat Geo’s Monster Fish TV show. Then Mireya Mayor will discuss her surprising transition from NFL cheerleader to National Geographic Emerging Explorer and wildlife expert. All three lectures will take place at 7 p.m. in The Hoglund Foundation Theater, a National Geographic Experience. Season and individual tickets are available at perotmuseum.org. Held in conjunction with the Museum’s First Thursday Late Night, National Geographic Live! is presented by Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.

“If you can’t climb the tallest mountains or dive to the depths of the ocean yourself, this is the next best thing. It’s inspirational, reality-based story time for adults,” said Dan Kohl, the Perot Museum’s interim chief executive officer. “These speakers were chosen not only for their daring accomplishments but also because they’re truly great storytellers whose adventures are illustrated with breathtaking National Geographic photography.”

For more than 20 years, Hilaree O’Neill has been conquering some of the world’s most tumultuous mountains. A professional skier, mountaineer, writer and mother, O’Neill has endured numerous expeditions around the world – from Nepal to Denali to Greenland – and her stories are quite remarkable. On multiple mountains, many with steep, narrow corridors, she has been the first skier to accomplish a successful descent. But it was in May 2012 when she made a big mark becoming the first woman to climb Mount Everest and Lhotse in under 24 hours. The avid adventurer will give guests a peek into her numerous gripping journeys in Hilaree O’Neill: Point of No Return on Thursday, Jan. 5. 

On Thursday, March 2, monster fisherman and aquatic ecologist Zeb Hogan will take ticketholders along on his international excursions where he’s encountered some of the world’s largest freshwater fish – longer than six feet and more than 200 pounds – in Zeb Hogan: In Search of River Giants. Many of these giant swimmers, known as megafish, face extinction, which could in turn threaten freshwater ecosystems and the livelihood of millions of people. In an effort to bring awareness and understanding of these water-dwelling behemoths, Hogan has been traveling the world – spanning six continents – to help these critically endangered species. 

Primatologist and conservationist Mireya Mayor didn’t always know a life among the wild awaited her. In fact, in her former life she was a city-loving NFL cheerleader whose family thought joining Girl Scouts as a young child was too dangerous! But Mayor soon found her true calling and today is a renowned National Geographic explorer, author, scholar, TV correspondent and mother of six. With the earned alias “female Indiana Jones,” Mayor will culminate the 2017 speaker seriesin Mireya Mayor: Pink Boots and a Machete on Thursday, May 4. 

TICKETS. Season tickets for the 2017 National Geographic speaker series include all three lectures and are $75 for members and $90 for non-members. Tickets to individual lectures are $30 for members and $35 for non-members. (Museum general admission and access to First Thursday Late Night is not required – or included – with lecture ticket purchase.) 

The Perot Museum is located at 2201 N. Field Street in Dallas, Texas. For more information, visit perotmuseum.org or call 214-428-5555.