Museum throws a roaring soiree
The opening of Te Manawa’s latest exhibition almost seemed like any other.
Politicians, patrons and VIPs schmoozed, ducked under tails, snacked on savoury pies and patted a 2-metre tall extinct predator on the head.
The adolescent T-Rex, puppeted by a performer concealed inside a shouldermounted robotic rig, mingled with the crowd gathered to celebrate the opening of Dinosaur Encounter in Palmerston North on Friday night. Dinosaur creations were also seen at the city’s airport and a spring festival the next day.
Te Manawa is the first museum in the southern hemisphere to host the exhibition, which is from the Natural History Museum in London. Te Manawa concepts and engagement leader Kristelle Plimmer said Palmer- ston North was lucky to get such a wonderful exhibition.
‘‘[The Dinosaur Encounter team] happened to have a slot coming up with enough time to transport it to New Zealand. As soon as it’s done here it heads back to Europe.’’
Palmerston North mayor Grant Smith said Te Manawa had done a great job securing such a exclusive high-profile exhibition
‘‘ Events like these really help grow our reputation. Palmerston North is being mentioned as a host city alongside Paris and Shanghai – all the great cities of the world.’’
‘‘Palmerston North is being mentioned as a host city alongside...the great cities of the world.’’ Grant Smith
Young travellers are surprised but not scared by a visit of a dinosaur to Palmerston North Airport. Sarah Nagy, 8, and Connor Nagy, 6, check out the dinosaur.