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National Aviary Opens "Living Dinosaurs" Presented by Peoples

Daily guided tours, a chance to fly through Jurassic times as a Pterosaur, hands-on play, real dinosaur fossils and touchable replicas among the elements highlighting traits that birds and dinosaurs share

  • Get up close and personal with fossils at the Living Dinosaurs exhibit!

May 23, 2019 (Pittsburgh, PA) – Guests to the National Aviary this summer will experience birds in a whole new way – as the living descendants of dinosaurs. The new exhibit, Living Dinosaurs presented by Peoples, provides incredible visuals and a wide array of hands-on fun and learning opportunities highlighting fascinating traits that birds and dinosaurs share.

Visitors can see real dinosaur fossils, experience the textures of touchable replicas, get close to dinosaur skeletons and models, and gaze up at two life-sized pterosaur sculptures, one of which was custom designed by artist Brian Engh to highlight specific avian characteristics. Vivid artwork by paleoartist Luis Rey depicts prehistoric scenes with brightly colored, feathered dinosaurs. The large prints and murals are a perfect complement to the hands-on exhibit pieces.

Guests with a 50-inch or greater wingspan can fly like a pterosaur through Jurassic times on Birdly®, the National Aviary’s full body flight simulator which uses virtual reality, wind speed, audio headsets, flappable wings, and full body, responsive mechanical systems to give participants the real feel of flying. The National Aviary is one of only three places in the country where this Jurassic Flight experience is available.

Admission to the National Aviary includes these daily activities: 3:00 p.m. “Fossils and Feathers” guided tour to see birds up close and learn how their fascinating adaptations connect to prehistoric creatures; a 12:00 p.m. “Paleo Play” game or craft; an 11:00 a.m. storytime with Ty the feathered baby T-Rex that blinks, roars, and interacts with guests, and from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. “Dino Discovery Camp,” which includes a dress-up play area, life-size dinosaur nest, dig pit, touchable fossils, and more. In addition, guests will have opportunities for self-guided exploration with Living Dinosaurs signs highlighting similarities between birds and dinosaurs throughout the National Aviary’s immersive habitats.

Hands-on learning activities also include interactive question boards, magnifying stations, a dinosaur fossil puzzle, a Jurassic play land with dinosaur figures, a reading nook, and even a chance to snap a photo with a Velociraptor.

Living Dinosaurs, presented by Peoples, runs May 25 to September 29 at the National Aviary.

This exhibit’s grand opening on May 25 coincides with the National Aviary’s year-long celebration of the Allegheny Regional Asset District’s 25th Anniversary. On the 25th day of each month, the National Aviary is hosting a celebration activity. On May 25, 2019, every 25th visitor to the National Aviary will get to spin a prize wheel and win one of a variety of prizes, including a free flight on Birdly Jurassic Flight, free admission, or even a free sloth encounter for two! Find activity reminders and updates at aviary.org or by searching #RAD25.

About the National Aviary

The National Aviary is America’s only independent indoor nonprofit zoo dedicated exclusively to birds. Located on Pittsburgh’s historic North Side, the National Aviary’s diverse collection comprises 500 birds representing more than 150 species from around the world, many of them threatened or endangered in the wild. The National Aviary’s large walk-through exhibits create an intimate, up-close interaction between visitors and free-flying birds, including opportunities to hand-feed and to meet many species rarely found in zoos anywhere else in the world. Hours of operation are 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. daily. For admission rates and more information visit www.aviary.org.

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