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Archive for Tuesday, December 11, 2001

FHSU chief praises dinosaur exhibit

December 11, 2001

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— Fort Hays State University's top administrator is traveling the state this week, promoting a coming exhibit on dinosaurs at the Sternberg Museum of Natural History.

The exhibit features models from the latest "Jurassic Park" movie. It also has 80 percent of the skeleton for a predator bigger than one known as "Sue."

Sue was a Tyrannosaurus Rex whose fossil was the largest one ever found for that prehistoric animal. The new exhibit will feature the fossil of a Giganotosaurus, 45 feet to Sue's 42 feet.

The museum was host to Sue in February and March, drawing nearly 106,000 visitors. Fort Hays officials believe the success of the Sue exhibit allowed them to obtain "Jurassic Park: The Life and Death of Dinosaurs" exhibit.

The exhibit opens Feb. 2 and runs through May 5, with tickets $6 for adults and $4 for children if bought in advance, $1 more if purchased at the door.

Hammond said he was touring the state Monday and today so that Kansans know about the exhibit and get their tickets early, ahead of out of state tourists. His planned stops included Topeka, Wichita, Kansas City, Hutchinson, Salina, Great Bend, Dodge City, Garden City, Colby and Liberal.

"We want to give Kansans the first shot," Hammond said Monday, during a visit to the Statehouse.

The first "Jurassic Park" movie, from 1993, was among the top-grossing films of all time, directed by Steven Spielberg and based on a novel by Michael Crichton. It told the story of a company that cloned dinosaurs so that it could open a theme park on a remote island.

Two more films followed, and the exhibit is sponsored by Spielberg's production company, Amblin Entertainment, and the company that released the films, Universal. Discussions about the exhibit began this summer.

The exhibit discusses predators and giant plant-eaters, as well as theories on how the dinosaurs became extinct.

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