Posted on April 24, 2012
Originally published in the El Dorado News-Times on April 25, 2012.
The Arkansas Museum of Natural Resources has announced the arrival of a new, customized traveling exhibit titled, "Dinosaur Discoveries: Ancient Fossils, New Ideas.?
The massive exhibit, funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation and custom-built by New York?s American Museum of Natural History, spans 1,500 square feet and includes seven interactive stations, according to Pam Beasley, museum superintendent.
Modern science has been used to learn something new about creatures that lived millions of years ago. Dinosaur Discoveries focuses on how dinosaurs lived, maneuvered, defended themselves and how they eventually became extinct, according to Beasley.
She said Dinosaur Discoveries "provides a journey into the exciting world of modern paleontology. New dinosaur fossils are being discovered faster than ever before. Advanced technology allows scientists to look at these fossils in fresh ways allowing researchers to gain surprising insights into these amazing animals. New discoveries, new technology and new ideas are helping today?s scientists piece together what these living, breathing dinosaurs were really like.
"Ever since the first dinosaur fossil was identified almost 200 years ago, people have wondered how these fascinating animals lived, moved and behaved. At first, dinosaur hunters used only such tools as a keen eye, shovels and compasses. Today, scientists also rely on everything from computer simulation software to scanning electron microscopes.?
"This exhibit is traveling nationally and has been exhibited in very prestigious museums such as the Field Museum in Chicago, the Museum of Science in Boston and the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. We are very fortunate in south Arkansas to have such an exhibit of this magnitude in area. Also, the Arkansas Museum of Natural Resources is free to the public, so you can save money on travel and admission fees which can range up to $25 in some major museums.? This mobile showcase was produced specifically for the Arkansas Discovery Network, a unique statewide museum collaborative of which the Arkansas Museum of Natural Resources is a member, Beasley said.
Dinosaur Discoveries will be showcased until July 23. Museum hours are: 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 1:00 until 5:00 p.m. on Sunday."