We recently went to visit a T-Rex Planet animatronic dinosaur show in our home city. I heard about these shows several times in the past but they were always too far away for us to enjoy. When I was alerted to this one I just couldn’t pass it up – especially since our youngest had recently gone through a Dino-loving phase and my oldest has been obsessed with a dinosaur based survival game.
Is it worth the money? The T-rex Planet dinosaur show can seem a little bit pricey for families, especially if you have more than one child. At a cost of $25 dollars per child and $20 dollars per adult, I was a touch skeptical but since I had a good bit of money socked away for ‘fun’ thanks to Swagbucks… and my oldest has a birthday next weekend we decided to splurge. There are no local natural history museums in our area so I figured, when else would they have the chance to check out dinosaurs that weren’t virtual in nature? I wasn’t disappointed, but I think your enjoyment level will vary based on how dinosaur obsessed your kids are. If your kids love dinosaurs then it’s definitely worth it, if not then you should probably save your money.
The T-rex Planet show took up three large rooms in our local fairgrounds. Two of the rooms boasted dinosaur models with various animatronic abilities. The lighting and sound effects were dramatic. Many of the dinosaurs were not quite life-sized but the kids didn’t seem to care. They were far too busy running from model to model and marveling at the big teeth and claws.
Carnivorous dinosaurs such as T-rex and Albertosaurus seemed to dominate the experience but there were models of everyone’s favorite herbivores such as Triceratops and Stegosaurus as well. Even as an adult I was quite impressed by the various raptor displays, with models featuring both the leathery, scaled versions of old and the feathered and furred versions being considered more recently. Each of the Dinosaurs was accompanied by a small name and information plate which my 8-year-old took great pride in reading out for us.
Aside from the animatronics the show also featured a few skeletons and large fossils including a life-sized Triceratops skull which was pretty mind blowing in terms of size. When paired with the fossil dig activity offered in the same room it allowed the kids a good opportunity to learn about the field of Paleontology and the science behind fossils.
The third room of the show contained a Gift shop.The shop with a vast assortment of Dinosaur related merchandise. As with all activity related gift shops, the prices were a bit steep. There were a few neat items, however, like real fossilized dinosaur poop as well as some hatching eggs and dino dig related items that could be useful for further dinosaur related educational lessons. The highlight of this part of the show was the Dinosaur rides. Although it costs a bit extra ($5) I gave in and let them each have a turn, I mean how often do you get the chance to ride a walking dinosaur? Both kids chose to ride the Ankylosaurus and were then allowed to get pictures taken on the Triceratops.
The back of the show featured a few free carnival games and a cartoony dinosaur animatronic band. My youngest
was more entertained by this section of the show then my oldest but they both had some fun before we started to head out. It was on our way out of the show that my kids had their favorite experience (they are both still talking about it). A man carrying a small realistic baby T-rex puppet in a crate allowed them to pet and interact. The kids loved it and were quite convinced that it was a real baby dinosaur.
I give the T-Planet Dinosaur show a thumbs up. It was pricey but fun, an experience that my kids will remember for a long time. If you are interested in taking your own family to one of their shows I encourage you to check out their T-Rex Planet website for show locations and details.