Summer Zoorassic Park

BRAD C. PARKIN

ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR, MARKETING SERVICES

      Tyrannosaurus Rex, known as the “tyrant lizard” who ruled the world over 65 million years ago, will be taking up temporary residence at Utah’s Hogle Zoo this summer, along with 12 of his dinosaur counterparts.

Think today’s predators are fierce? Just wait until you and your family experience the wonders of the prehistoric world at Zoorassic Park, as modern technology brings these ancient animals to life, beginning Saturday, May 14.

These 13 life-size animatronic dinosaurs, representing species from the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, will be scattered throughout Zoo grounds and, as a thank you for your continued support, may be viewed and enjoyed for FREE with your valid Zoo membership or paid Zoo admission.

      Along with the T-Rex, a sampling of the species represented will be the spiky-necked Styracosaurus, the bony-plated Kentrosaurus, the fierce Megalosaurus, a gator-like Suchomimus, the spitting Dilophosaurus, the Allosaurus (a Utah favorite!) and the giant Brachiosaurus, which stood up to 50 feet tall and weighed as much as six elephants.

Zoorassic Park, presented by Les Schwab Tire Centers, and other major and supporting sponsors, is making its third appearance at the Zoo since 1993. The dinosaurs of Zoorassic Park use futuristic technology that makes these creatures seem to come alive, moving, roaring, snarling and yes, even spitting!

You can enjoy Zoorassic Park during Zoo hours, May 14 through August 21 only. For more information about Zoorassic Park, visit www.hoglezoo.org.

THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM OF UTAH

Even though you can’t visit the Natural History  Museum of Utah because it’s currently closed to pack its artifacts to move to its new building, which will open this fall, you can still experience some of its engaging dinosaur programming while visiting the Zoo.

You’ll step back 75 million years when you visit Dinosaur Tales: Utah’s Fossils and the People Who Dig Them, an exhibit in the Zoo’s Auditorium every day throughout the summer.  You’ll see fossilized remains of animals you might find at any zoo today, such as crocodiles, turtles, fish, as well as a fossilized skin impression and fossil bones.  Plus, you’ll get an inside look at the science of paleontology and may even meet the Museum curators and volunteers who discover new dinosaur species each year.

For details on Museum programming, visit hoglezoo.org and click on the Museum logo or call (801) 581-6927.

Visit “Living Links” at Zoorassic Park

As fascinating as all dinosaurs are, they didn’t roam alone.

Drop by the Zoo’s Tropical Gardens that will be transformed into a space where living descendants of the dinosaurs, or animals with similar adaptations, will be featured.

You’ll see king vultures, hissing cockroaches (which pre-date dinosaurs, it is said), diving bugs, a goliath bird-eating spider, piranha, brine shrimp and even a working beehive!  Plus, many more unique and interesting critters of the 21st Century.

Discover how they fit into the fossil record, and why we should be glad they exist today.

Living Links will be open during Zoo hours.

BILLINGS PRODUCTIONS

These giant mechanical dinosaurs were designed and built to scale by Billings Productions of McKinney, Texas. Each dinosaur is built on a steel frame and covered with intricately painted rubber skin. State-of-the-art electronics and air pistons power the dinosaurs’ movements, which include grasping hands, menacing claws and gnashing teeth.

“From the educational aspect, there is a whole world of dinosaurs out there,” states Trey Billings, vice president of operations.  “There are over 300 different species that we know about spanning 228 million years.  If you consider modern humans have been living for an estimated 200,000 years, dinosaurs lived in a time span 825 times greater than our own!”

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