Yesterday we had the unique opportunity to visit a Dinosaur theme park called Field Station Dinosaurs. Located literally a jump, hop and skip from NYC in the Meadlowlands, it’s a park that houses over thirty life-sized, realistic dinosaurs (including the ninety foot long Argentinosaurus, the largest animatronic dinosaur ever made) come to life thanks to the brilliant engineering of the world’s leading roboticists and the imagination of hard-working artists. It was a day of wonder and excitement for my 7 and 9 year-olds as they went from one robotic dinosaur to another. As I walked through the park, I heard shrieks of excitement, mainly pouring out of little boy’s mouths, as they stated, “This is the best day evah!” My kids are not such dinosaur connoisseurs, but they were intrigued by the enormity of the structures and how close to real-life they are. My son prided himself on the fact that he knew they weren’t real and where exactly the technology was based in their structures to exude such strong sounds of “ROAR”.
If you don’t believe me about how close this park is to the city, check out the picture above with the view of the NYC skyline in the background. From our visit, it was clear how much time and research went into creating this per-historic experience. Scientists from the New Jersey State Museum worked to ensure that the exhibition encompasses the latest theories and discoveries in the fields of paleontology, geology, and environmental studies. Workshops, games and activities connect the story of the dinosaurs to our world today, giving new relevance to their lives and power to the tale of their extinction. We went to several workshops and were able to really learn more about pre-historic times, which my kids took great interest in. It’s a time of their lives where they are taking in all the information they can. My daughter, at age 9, is like a sponge. She was actually just on the cusp of being a little bit old for this park, but over time perhaps the park will add workshops and more for kids a little bit older.
A few tips before your trip:
- When you get to the address entered into your GPS, be sure to look carefully for the gate, as it is not easy to find at first glance. Parking is right next to the park and costs $10 per car. NH Transit is a short walk from the gate and they offer a weekend shuttle from the Secaucus Junction Station.
- The park remains open on rainy days but be prepared for the rain as there isn’t much shelter inside the park. Bring ponchos and umbrellas. They do offer complimentary ponchos.
- Bring sunscreen and comfortable walking shoes.
- Bring snacks and lunch if you like, there are picnic tables. They sell hot dogs and popcorn. There is no ATM on the grounds.
- You can purchase tickets online or in advance by phone at (855) 999-9010 and save a few dollars per person. Tickets are $20 at the gate; $17.50 per child and senior and free for kids under two. Call the day before to save.