Virtual Life for Dinosaurs at Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County celebrated the opening of its new, 14,000-square-foot Dinosaur Hall featuring the debut of Thomas the T. rex along with more than 300 fossils, 20 dinosaur skeletons and multi-media interactives. 

Visitors from all over Southern California attended the festive opening day which began with a ribbon cutting with NHM president Jane Pisano and Los Angeles County supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who called the new Dinosaur Hall a “major gift to Los Angeles and beyond.”

The opening day celebration on Saturday also featured gallery tours, paleontological “dig sites,” and family activities, including free art workshops and craft tables.

[ Also Read: Animatronic Dinosaur Park Opens at Kings Island ]

Crowds inside Dinosaur Hall saw the centerpiece of the exhibition, the T. rex growth series containing a fossil trio of the youngest known baby, a rare juvenile, and a recently discovered young adult (Thomas)—said to be one of the ten most complete T. rex specimens in the world.

The Dinosaur Hall’s other standout exhibits include a Triceratops; the armor-backed Stegosaurus; the predator Allosaurus; a 68-foot, long-necked Mamenchisaurus; and giant marine reptiles.

Using the exhibit’s interactive touch screens, guests engaged in simulated paleontological role-play as excavator, prospector or illustrator, and learned about dinosaur senses and how they may have sounded based on a CT scan of a dinosaur brain.

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Rakesh Raman