Tom Tillis General Manager says the main feature of the Branson Dinosaur Museum is that it contains 50 full bodied life size dinosaurs. He said “Each represents the dinosaur the way it was, not the way the movies project them, but actually the way they were.” Tillis explains that each of the 50 dinosaurs is constructed from “bones” cast from the actual dinosaur bones. Then the body was built around the bones showing amazing detail down to actually being able to see the rib cage with each being as real life and as close to the actual size as you can get. He said the museum has everything from the “Microraptor,” one of the smallest dinosaurs to the two and a half story “T-Rex and everything in between.”
He said that a lot of people have misconceptions about dinosaurs and what they can do because of movies and other things that they have seen or heard. Tillis explained that there are LCD screens in each room of the museum with a narrated presentation explaining the dinosaur(s) in that room and what they could actually do or not do. Tillis said that another interactive feature is a “Scavenger Hunt Quiz” that visitors can do as they go through the museum which is a fun way to learn more about the dinosaurs and enhance the overall experience of the museum.
When asked what the highlight of the museum is Tillis said, “Everybody loves T-Rex. They were the kings of the dinosaurs, kings of the meat eaters and their name translates to mean ‘tyrant lizard king.'” This writer would have to agree with Tillis when he said that it’s pretty impressive when you walk around the corner and see T-Rex towering above everything. He added that there is a full sized T-Rex head in the lobby which is a very popular picture taking spot. He said people love to get their picture taken with their heads in T-Rex’s mouth.
As I was looking around the lobby prior to going into the museum, I noticed a family that had just come out. When I asked 13 year old Bella Barrett of Cambridge, Minnesota, how she liked the museum, she said, “I thought it was really neat. It’s a great learning experience and everything is so lifelike. It made me feel like I was taken back a couple of million years.” When asked what she liked best about the museum she said, “I liked the dinosaurs because they looked so real.” When asked if she would recommend the museum for kids of her age she enthusiastically said, “Oh, yeah!”
Tillis points out that in addition to the dinosaurs, there is a Learning Center for kids with interesting activities including an educational video, coloring, a computer with games, puzzles and other fun activities. They also have a “Fossil Dig” where people can “dig” for actual fossils in a huge table top sandbox. Families with kids just love the “Dinosaur Bounce” house which is a dinosaur themed “moon bounce house,” located in the lobby.
Tillis said that the indoor museum is not weather dependent and is open every day of the year except on Christmas Day. Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center said, “The Dinosaur Museum is another example of the variety of attractions that Branson has to offer. From ziplines, to world class coasters, butterflies and dinosaurs Branson has it all.”
For additional information or tickets for the Dinosaur Museum or any of Branson’s other shows and attractions or for lodging arrangements please contact the Branson Tourism Center (BTC), one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services. BTC can be reached by either calling their toll free number 1-800-785-1550 or through their website www.BransonTourismCenter.com.