As our trip was winding it’s way down, we found ourselves with some extra time in New England. In a former life I used to be an Assistant Activity Director for a home that served adults with disabilities, so planning trips and activities is something I’m pretty good at and really enjoy (and, yes, that’s an open invitation for anyone who wants to whisk me away from my crap day job and hire me as their travel agent) . Anyway, I had this whole vacation worked out including driving times, fun restaurants, and goofy attractions. Looking back I’m pretty proud of myself with the exception of the Maryland Aquarium (which was a total rip-off as David mentioned in his last post) and also going too cheap on hotels.com. Believe me, some of the dumps we stayed at could have warranted horror blogs of their own!
Lately I have found myself reading guide books of fun things to do in New England. Locations that would make for fun day trips with friends. One book I found of particular interest is “Curious New England” by Joseph A. Citro and Diane E. Foulds. Though this was the “updated and illustrated second edition,” it still came out in 2004 and is a bit outdated. Thankfully, most of the entries within are not.
If you grew up a dinosaur fan like me, then you probably remember the release of 1993’s Jurassic Park as being a cinematic game changer! Not only did it feature the most REAL looking dinosaurs ever to stomp the Silver Screen, but also ones that were (at the time) the most scientifically accurate. Gone were the days of two-legged, meat-eaters like Tyrannosaurus Rex standing up straight while dragging its tail behind him as Steven Spielberg proved that CGI effects (when done correctly) were the wave of the future. This past weekend not only saw the re-release of that film (in a new 3D format), but also the opening of an animatronic dinosaur exhibit at Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo! What a wonderful time to be a dino-geek…especially one living near The Windy City!
Last month we featured the animatronic dinosaurs of The Milwaukee County Zoo (see HERE). The very day that piece was published, both Daves got together and checked out yet another Dino-mite exhibit at New England’s Franklin Park Zoo! I know there are several Dinosaur companies out there and that FPZ used the same one as MCZ but they did offer different dinos. Here are some highlights…
In an effort to bring in more guests to support the animals in their collections, many zoos around the country are seeking out extinct ones! Dinosaurs are a HUGE hit among kids (and adult kids like me) and perfectly illustrate that some of the best monsters imaginable were ones that really existed! These shots were taken at the Milwaukee Zoo’s “Adventure Dinosaur” and I loved how they incorporated realistic looking foliage to really give guests the full dino-effect! The prehistoric beasts also moved and made sounds!
This past weekend I took my 7 year old son, Luke, to the “Discover the Dinosaurs” show at Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illnois. The venue was just across the street from The Crowne Paza Hotel where the quintessential Godzilla festival, G-FEST, takes place each July. Actually, the two have much in common as dinosaur fans and Godzilla enthusiasts are often one in the same. The Big G is, after all, a dinosaur that’s been mutated by atomic power (no, not an iguana, I’m not talking about the Tri-Star version).