Second Nature


Have you been missing something lately? Feel like your options for kid-friendly early-morning weekend outings have been limited?
Well, put the Canadian Museum of Nature back on your list. It’s re-opening after seven (long) weeks of shut-down for major renovations. We’ve seen it, we like it and, starting tomorrow, you can check it out too.

Luckily the first sections to re-open are the ever-popular dinosaur and mammal galleries. (The dinosaurs have a fancy new name—look for the “Talisman Energy Fossil Gallery”.)

These new galleries are familiar with a twist. If you were attached (as we were) to the furry mammals in the dioramas they’re still there, just better. Re-touched, re-positioned, in completely new surroundings—they look great.

Walking through the museum one thing becomes clear. They’ve thought about your kids. They want you to come with your kids. They want you and your kids to come back.

Here are some of the reasons we’re sure you will:

See: Exhibits are at kid height—it’s easy for them to pop their head up through the “hole in the ice” in the polar bear diorama to get a seal’s eye view of the situation (yikes!) but Mom or Dad would have to be a contortionist to try it.

Do: If your budding paleontologist has ever wondered how dino-land sounded, now they can pump air through the “noise tubes” of a parasauralophus skull to find out.

Touch: Kids are allowed, even encouraged, to touch many specimens, samples and tools of the trade.

Finally, we’re not sure if we should mention it, but there is the dino poop. That’s right, fossilized T Rex dung (coprolite if you’re a little more sophisticated). It’s true we don’t know your kids, but this will fascinate the ones we know.

Of course all the practical things we always liked are still there including stroller and wheelchair loans, a free cloakroom, and the brown bag lunch/snack room. And the new elevators are stroller-heaven—you may never have to wait for the next trip again.

Free admission days are over but Ottawa Public Library cardholders can borrow the Nature Card to get their family in for free.

It’s the best way we know to get nature savvy.


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