January 28, 2021

Pandemic Amusements: The Quest for Dinos

After hearing out my adventure through the Jurassic Quest drive-thru animatronic dinosaur show, a friend said, "You've been on a dinosaur kick lately."
I replied that I'm kind of always on a dinosaur kick. Only, I thought I'd already seen all the dinosaurs SoCal has to offer. 

But this month, a roving herd of dozens of prehistoric megafauna—from not just the Jurassic, but also Cretaceous and Triassic Periods—hunkered down for a couple of weeks in the Rose Bowl Stadium parking lot. 

Pasadena didn't get its annual Rose Parade or Rose Bowl game this year because of COVID-19—but at least the pandemic gave us a chance to drive among the dinosaurs. 

When somebody asks "Is it safe?", you can laugh because you know they're joking about getting caught in the short-armed clutches of a lifelike facsimile of an extinct beast...

...and not being serious about this monster of a virus we've been battling for a year now.  

To be honest, I hadn't realized how many different species of dinosaurs there once were...

...and with so many different personalities!

Even in life-size form...
...none of them seemed very scary. 

They seemed to be having a good time...

...even as they leaned over to take a bite out of the hood of somebody's car...

...or reached out to claw you just a little bit. 

There's an interpretive audio soundtrack that helps introduce you to the different specimens... they the Alvarezsaurus, Pinochiorex, Darwinopterus, or the ever-elusive Gabrielinosaurus. 

They all seemed to be amused—maybe even laughing at us. 

Except the Megalodon. I'm pretty sure that guy meant business. 

I know this drive-thru attraction is meant for kids—but me and my passengers are just big kids anyway. 

And anybody can feel small beside a Giganticopterus. 

In an area teeming with tiny lizards underfoot, and modest-sized birds overhead, it's nice to see the overlooked and forgotten creatures take over and grab the spotlight for an hour or so. 

Jurassic Quest is headed next to Fairplex Pomona, OC Fair Costa Mesa, and the Del Mar Fairgrounds.

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