Pack up your little paleontologists. You won’t want to miss Mike Bennett’s latest adventure.
Chances are you’ve encountered Mike Bennett’s artwork before. Families flocked to his A to Zoo exhibit and Crypto-Zoo, and his slow down signs can be found in almost every neighborhood.
Mike Bennett has created another joy-filled experience, this time in downtown Portland. Located across from Pioneer Square in a gorgeous retail space (formerly Banana Republic), Dinolandia features 1,000+ cutouts made from reclaimed plywood and recycled paint. Younger children will marvel at the bright colors, cheerful dinosaurs and moving lights. Older kids will love reading about the dinosaurs and trying to match the names to their giant cutouts. Adults and kids alike will chuckle at the descriptions, which include gems such as, “Some scientists believe T. Rex’s arms evolved exclusively for tickling. Do you think it’s true?” and of Sauroniops, “All we know of it comes from one ‘precious’ fragment. We’ll need more than ‘one bone to know it all, in the land of dinos where the fossils lie.” A virtual Mike Bennett guides families through this time traveling adventure at video checkpoints, and there are a few buttons to press along the way. It’s an immersive, imaginative experience that will appeal to a wide range of ages.
That location is an expensive one, which is why this exhibit isn’t free. Your $5 admission helps pay the rent, and supports one of Portland’s beloved local artists. Also be sure to stop by the gift shop on the way out for one of those popular yard signs. The gift shop has everything from stickers to clothing, so you’re sure to find a treasure. Plus it’s one more way to support Mike Bennett Art!
There is lots of parking downtown, but we highly recommend taking the MAX. If you bring your stroller along, you can wheel it through the entire exhibit (even a double-wide stroller will fit), or you can park it by the front desk. If you choose to wheel through, you’ll need an attendant to guide you through a special path back to the elevators, as the entire exhibit is one way only with no backtracking allowed.
Speaking of no backtracking, be sure to stop at the restroom when you pass it early on your trek through Dinolandia. A staff member can guide you back to it, but it will be easier to seize the opportunity when you pass by.
Covid safety is taken seriously at Dinolandia. Masks are required to protect the tiniest paleontologists, and, as mentioned, you can only travel one way through Dinolandia along a predetermined path.
Photography is encouraged! Be sure to tag the artist @mikebennettart and @dinolandiapdx. And speaking of Instagram, check out our reel of the Dinolandia Sneak Peek.
The fun begins May 31! It’s so much better than a Banana Republic.
11 am-7 pm, Tuesdays through Sundays, May 31-September 10, 2022
710 Yamhill St.
Portland, OR 97205
General Admission $5, free for children 8 and under. Summer passes are available for $30/person, or $50 for two. For a $100 gold pass for two people, you also get 20% off everything in the gift shop .
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