I'm a freelance writer living in Perth. Having 2 young kids with endless energy, we are always on the lookout for new outdoor activities.
Winter school holiday could be challenging to parents as it is a bit harder to find something for the kids to look forward to. It is too cold to don bathers on the beach and you can't rely on the weather to be cooperative for all your park-going plans. Thankfully there is something different to be excited about this time around as Dinosaur Petting Zoo is coming to Perth.
Putting the words "Dinosaur," "Petting," and "Zoo" in the same sentence seems to be an oxymoron, but that is exactly what WA Museum is doing and being a state museum, they should know what they are talking about. No, they have not managed to clone a dinosaur yet, but you just might think they have when you see how life-like their dinosaurs are.
Dinosaur Petting Zoo is an interactive theatre performance featuring large-scale dinosaur puppets. These amazingly realistic dinosaurs created by Erth, an Australian company specialising in visual physical theatre, were developed based on the science of palaentology and fossil evidence. They include the Australovenator which is based on a carnivorous dinosaur skeleton found in Queensland, the long-necked Titanosaur, and smaller dinosaurs like the Leaellynasaura.
The concept of petting zoo means that the performance would display and treat the puppets like live animals. Children would be invited to interact with some of the "dinosaurs" and they would "react" (under the guidance of the puppeteers) in quite an animal-like manner--which would invite lots of squealing and giggling from the young ones. And even though you may think you know better than to be fooled by a puppet, it is actually quite hard not to be charmed by a doe-eyed Leaellynasaura peeping from behind its "handler" like a shy little girl.
Life-like Leaellynasaura (Photo courtesy of erth.com.au)
So, bring the kids down to WA Museum (Perth Cultural Centre, James Street, Perth) if you'd like to watch this unique spectacle. Shows are on 10 am weekdays starting 25 June and it would increase to three times a day Tuesdays to Sundays during July school holidays. Tickets range from $12.50 for a child or consession card holder to $48 for a family of four. WA Museum's website has the details.