Photos: It’s Lit! Minnesota Zoo illuminates nature for drive by exhibit

Nature Illuminated brings lights and giant animals curbside in new drive-thru exhibition.

In under an hour, you can drive your car through the arctic, the ocean, grasslands, temperate forest, tropical forest, and Minnesota — all with one trip to the Minnesota Zoo. 

The Zoo’s new exhibit, Nature Illuminated, features massive inflatable replicas based on animals from all over the world. They are lit up with colorful lights and accompanied by a guided audio tour played through your car stereo. 

The one-of-a-kind animals were produced locally by Landmark Creations in Burnsville, Minn., using all reusable materials. Some of them took up to six weeks to craft. 

The exhibit, which opened Thursday, lets cars get up close and personal with replica animals — some of which are nearly 20 feet tall — while shining a light on at-risk and endangered species. 

You can purchase tickets per vehicle from the Minnesota Zoo.

Grow the Future of Public Media

MPR News is supported by Members. Gifts from individuals power everything you find here. Make a gift of any amount today to become a Member!