There was plenty of roaring coming from the direction of Newcastle Museum today. It was the official opening of Tyrannosaurs: Meet the Family, an exhibition of tyrannosaurs developed and co-presented by the Australian Museum.
We timed our visit to see the life-sized roaming T.Rex dinosaur puppet. He was a special guest for opening day and entertained as well as scared the crowd. His large bulk and roaring prompted bawling from a few tots in the crowds.
After T. Rex skulked off, we wandered inside to check out the new exhibit Tyrannosaurs Meet the Family. The title refers to this clan of terrifying dinosaurs who became the world’s top predators. Tyrannosaurus Rex is the most well known of the tyrannosaurs, but the rest of the family is equally as interesting.
Although the exhibition space isn’t large, it’s packed with things to see and do. There’s 10 dinosaurs remains on show which demonstrate the differing sizes and shapes of tyrannosaurs.
The star of the show is Scotty T. Rex. Standing five metres high and 11 metres long, Scotty is the largest in the family of big-toothed, sharp-clawed dinosaurs on display. He’s quite a sight.
The great thing about this exhibition is its interactive and multimedia experiences for adults and kids. It’s educational and entertaining. Each dinosaur statue features an interactive screen so you can learn more about the specific creature. For example, Scotty was named after a bottle of Scotch. True story!
One of the most popular interactive features is a giant video screen.
By standing in front of the screen, your image will appear on screen but will be surrounded by tyrannosaurs. Small ones at first and then a large T-Rex. The kids especially loved this and soon realised that if they stayed still, the raptors would come up to them.
There’s also a meteor station, where you need to jump as hard you can to create a meteor that will hit the earth and wipe out dinosaurs. Super fun! I jumped hard and created a meteor that wiped out greater Sydney while my daughter created a meteor causing a tsunami.
If you want to measure your ‘bite force’, try the squeeze machine to see if you can bite as much as a T-Rex. They could bite up to six tonnes.
We couldn’t drag our daughter away from the Tyrannosaur Tree, a table-top video game that multiple people can play at the same time. Players hatch mystery tyrannosaurs and have to place it correctly on the family tree which illustrates the relationships between them as well as their the evolution. If you place all the tyrannosaurs in the right order, a giant meteor wipes them all out demonstrating the mass extinction which they faced.
While she was busy hatching tyrannosaurs, I took the time to watch a few videos and learn more about these feared predators. It was fascinating to learn more about this family of dinosaurs.
If your family loves dinosaurs, I definitely recommend Tyrannosaurs Meet the Family. In my opinion, it’s best suited for kids aged 3 and over. I met a few two year old kids who were loving the tyrannosaurs. I think it just depends on how much of a dinosaur fans your young ones are. However, older kids will probably get more out of the exhibition as they can interact with more exhibits.
Entry fees apply for Tyrannosaurs: Meet the Family
Two and under free
The exhibit runs 31 October 2015 to 28 March 2016. In conjunction with the exhibit, there will be a range of dinosaur themed programs, including a special Dino Disco, dino-mite NYE event and Move it Like a Mini-osaur dance classes. For more information, visit the Newcastle Museum website.