Dinosaurs hold a fascination on our culture, even 250 million years after they roamed the earth. How else can you explain the success of everything from the Flinstones to Jurassic Park to the BBC TV show, Walking with Dinosaurs?
Now there's a new touring show based on that series that brings the large lizards to life in a new way.
Walking with Dinosaurs has been traveling around to arenas that are large enough to hold the Braciosaurus, T.Rex and their fellow gigantic extinct creatures. The exhibit is now on display at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
MPR's Tom Crann visited the dinosaur show with paleontologist Kristi Curry Rogers, an assistant professor of paleontology at Macalester College who specializes in long-necked dinosaurs.
Rogers has some thoughts about the fascination we all have with dinosaurs, at any age.
"Part of it is that dinosaurs, at least for kids, are monsters. They really are real monsters, but they're extinct so they can't really do any damage to us. They don't really live with us anymore," said Rogers. "But I also think it's the fact that in museums and on television you see the bones of dinosaurs, and that leaves a lot of room for your imagination to put the skin and muscle and behaviors back onto those dinosaurs."
"Dinosaur science is one of those rare scientific disciplines in which you can really use your imagination to try to understand things," Rogers continued. "And there's a lot of room for creativity for that science, because there's a lot we just can't know."
Rogers was excited about the prospect of seeing the stage show, both the scientific and imaginative aspects. It's hosted by an actor who portrays a paleontologist, complete with Indiana Jones vest.
He served as the tour guide for Tom Crann and Kristi Curry Rogers.