Back for its second year, Dino Fest, a paleontological party and celebration of all things dinosaur, will return to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science Aug. 31-Sept. 1. All five levels of the Museum will be teeming with dinosaur activities including hands-on fossil digs, music and treats on the plaza, trivia, live interactions with birds of prey (aka modern-day dinosaurs), workshops, lectures, art activities and more. Dino Fest is free for members and included with general admission for non-members.
Ride the iconic T. rexcalator to the T. Boone Pickens Life Then and Now Hall to watch fossil preparators in the glass-encased Paleo Lab carefully extract 60-million-year-old fossils from large blocks of rock. These current fossil blocks are from the North Slope of Alaska, well north of the Arctic Circle, where Museum paleontologists have discovered two new dinosaur species in recent years – Pachyrhinosaurus perotorum and Nanuqusaurus hoglundi. Fossil preparators have already uncovered ribs, jaws and hipbones from these latest blocks, so guests may witness the unearthing of another new species!
Join Museum scientists on their paleo adventures through a series of inspiring, behind-the-scenes paleo talks. Fresh from his 22nd field season to Alaska, Perot Museum Chief Curator and Vice President of Research and Collections Dr. Anthony Fiorillo will share how his groundbreaking work in the Arctic connects to the intriguing specimens displayed throughout the Museum. Dr. Ron Tykoski, the Museum’s curator of vertebrate paleontology, will explain how scientists are working to answer questions about dinosaur lifestyles and behavior. Also, Museum geologists and fossil preparators will lead visitors to uncover clues left behind in the fossil record, provide a how-to on fossil preparation, and explore the final moments of the reign of dinosaurs just before and after the infamous asteroid impact.
Search for fossils modeled after the real discoveries made by Perot Museum scientists in dino dig pits on the Plaza, and get up-close with live birds from Window to the Wild. Take a picture with Roxy, the Museum’s roaming life-sized velociraptor primed for pre-historically perfect selfies, and preserve a paleo memory in a themed photo booth. Investigate how geologists and paleontologists determine the age of ancient life in “Dating Fossils,” and win original sketches from the Museum’s paleo staff by competing in Dino Trivia. Find out how scientists determine what dinosaurs looked like with “Illustrating the Past,” and find out the surprising connections between prehistoric dinosaurs and birds in “What is a Dinosaur? Bird Edition.”
Younger guests ages 5 and under can enjoy prehistoric story times and hands-on activities in the Junior Paleo Lab. Other Dino Fest must-dos include a food truck, face painting, dino-themed treats in the Café and “rocking” out to a live deejay on the Plaza, with adult beverages available for purchase. Find the full list of festivities here. Dino Fest is presented by Highland Capital Management.
HOURS. The Museum will open at 9 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 31 (8 a.m. for members) and 10 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 1 (9 a.m. for members.) Dino Fest activities will take place 10 a.m.-4 p.m. both days.
Through Sept. 2, the Perot Museum will be open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday thru Saturday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. The Museum will be closed for routine annual maintenance Sept. 3-5. General hours of operation, which will resume Sept. 6, are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday.
TICKETS. Museum general admission is $20 for adults (13-64), $13 for youth (2-12) and $18 for seniors (65+). Museum general admission is free for members. Children under 2 are always free. For groups of 10 or more, call for special rates at 214-428-5555 ext. 8. All prices are subject to change.