The American Museum of Natural History launches a new exhibit this weekend called “The World’s Largest Dinosaurs.” We had the privilege of checking it out early. It’s housed on the third floor of the museum, the same floor as the traditional dinosaur displays. But this ain’t your average dino-exhibit! This is the 2.0 of dinosaur exhibits.
Here are the best 5 things about it:
The 3-D Effects
The focus of the exhibit is mamenchisaurus, a sauropad with a 30-foot-neck. She even has a Twitter account, which describes her as “an 18-yr-old vegetarian with a 30-ft neck.” Instead of just a frame of bones, the mamenchisaurus looks like a full-scale, fleshed-out replica. Half of it is “without skin” and shows off the dino’s insides. High-def images are projected onto the body, making it look like the beast is actually breathing.
The Heart Pumping
Another cool part of the exhibit is a station that shows the trouble sauropods have getting blood to travel through their 30-foot necks. There are large pumping units, and you follow instructions on the screen for pumping blood into the dino’s heart. It’s like a real-life version of that one mini-game from Mario Party.
The Box of Salad
In the corner of the exhibit is a large box of glass filled with greenery that illustrates the sauropods’ diet. A small private school girl touring the exhibit was overheard telling her friends, “Ew, I would so not eat that ginko.” Her friends agreed. Then a private school girl’s mom remarked to her mom friends, “I feel like I do eat all of that already!” Her friends agreed.
The Digging Pit
The back of the exhibit is by far the best part. There’s a digging pit. Kids are given tools and goggles and get to play archeologist for a while. We also got to try out the digging and it turns out we are naturals. A great video plays overhead that explains the way the archeologists did their research.
That Part When The Dinosaurs Came To Life
Only in our dreams and this video, unfortunately:
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 15, 2011