Yesterday was the first day of a two-day traveling dinosaur show for kids at the Lane Events Center, Discover the Dinosaurs Unleashed. I had loosely planned on taking my toddler, who is barely older than the 2-year limit for free admission. I couldn’t figure out if it would be worth it to us or if he would get much out of it. He’s not particularly into dinosaurs, but he generally likes everything so he would probably like that too. Fate intervened and my friend offered my whole family tickets to the Oregon ducks football game, so we went to that Saturday instead.
A fellow mother of two under three, Gia Krotulski, pinch hit for me and offered this review of the event to help other parents and me decide whether to attend today. I hope to have more posts from Gia on this site because she is always out and about doing something with her kids.
Guest review by Gia Krotulski,
So you have a kid who loves dinosaurs and you are planning on taking them to Discover the Dinosaurs? Let me break it down for you so you won’t be disappointed. This is not Jurassic Park so don’t go in expecting that. Remember what doesn’t always seem cool to us older folk can be pretty amazing for the little ones.
Let’s start with the tickets. The general admission is $15 or $17 at the door, and everyone older than two needs a ticket. Yes you heard that right. A two-year-old is the same price as an adult, except we adults will spend the majority of the time standing in line and not being able to go in the bounce houses. Be prepared to stand in line a lot. The larger packages IMO are a little spendy and not worth the hassle. Unless, that is, you are super dead bent on getting a T-shirt, a drawstring backpack and a bag of sand.
Pro tip: there is a free fossil table for the kids to “discover” on to the left of the “fee area” fossil table. The dinosaur ride is extra or added with the extra cost ticket but it is much like that of a quarter machine ride you would find at the mall only you will have to wait an hour to ride it and pay more.
When you arrive, arrive early. We got there at 11 a.m. and it was packed. If you have already purchased your ticket online ahead of time you won’t need to stand in the purchase line which went around the block. We did not realize this because no one had told us that or directed us so it wasn’t until 15 minutes later that we realized we could just walk in if we had tickets in hand.
Do the bounce houses first. The lines get long. If you are bringing a little one, it is very stroller friendly though. Pack snacks. Lots of snacks. The food options offered are limited. I brought yogurt-covered raisins and told my son they were little dinosaur eggs. He loved that! There is also a great little complimentary gym area for the little ones to play in. My almost one-year-old loved it. Just wear socks, because you will have to take your shoes off. The bounce houses are kid only (bummer because I really wanted to go in one) and there are height requirements of 36 – 40 inches. So if your little is smaller than that, it’s probably not worth it to attend this event.
The Dino exhibit is jam packed full of automated Dinos. My toddler was a little scared of the T-Rex who he normally loves. I however was not. Know that what you will see will be slow moving and not as exciting probably to an adult but the kids seemed to enjoy it.
All and all just do it for them. My almost three-year-old was way more into the bounce houses, than the actual exhibit. As you exit the Dino exhibit you will be forced to walk through a gift shop. Another tactic in my opinion to get you to buy more. Things in the gift shop range from $5 to $60. We managed to not buy anything, but just mentally prepare for that if you have a little that gets excited very easily. Prepare for a meltdown.
My kids enjoyed themselves, but not much more than they would have at Papa’s Pizza. It might be worth it for older kids who have a true interest in dinosaurs, but a lot of the kids seemed either semi-interested or bored with the slow moving mechanical dinosaurs. For the hefty price you pay to get into this exhibit and with modern technology today, it’s only fair that I would expect a little more then a triceratops head turning side to side. Without a lower price point for toddlers, it’s really overpriced for our circumstances. On the bright side, it costs less than a similar event I attended in Texas.
Serena again. Thanks Gia! Sounds like we will sit this one out and wait until the kids are older. Here are the basics of the event if you would like to attend today.
Sunday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Admission: $17 at the door for ages 2 and up. Includes access to exhibition, attractions including Valley of the Bones, Ride the Dinosaurs, Cretaceous Crafts & Kids Adventure Zone.
$12 senior (as listed on website, may be more at the door)
$45 T-Rex Ticket: Includes one child admission ticket (ages 2-12), Face Paint Small Design, 5lb Fossil Find bag, Make-and-Take T-shirt and Green Screen Photo Print
FREE Children under 2 with paid adult
For more information: