Holiday Fun at the Perot Museum (+ Giveaways)


holiday fun at the perotDallas friends, be sure to set aside time over the holiday break to head downtown for a family trip to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science!  Yesterday I zipped into the city for Family Blogger Day at the Perot, where we were able to explore the new exhibits and check out the new 3-D films in the theater, and I guarantee, you won’t be disappointed!



Dr. Ron Tykoski, a paleontologist and fossil preparator at the Perot Museum, was on hand to talk to us about Ellie May, a Columbian wooly mammoth who was discovered last year outside of Italy, Texas in a gravel pit during excavation.  They’ve opted to display her in a totally unique way – one that will definitely intrigue my paleontologist in the making! One exciting feature for them was that Ellie May was found with her tail intact – she curled it up underneath her before she died! Apparently, the tail is one of the first things scavengers make away with, so this makes her especially unique. You’ll find her right by the elevators on Level 3.


Probably my FAVORITE exhibit there right now is the new “Creatures of the Night: Nature’s Bioluminescence” exhibit on the lower level. This fantastic exhibit explores glowing mushrooms, flickering fireflies, fluorescent corals and other fish that glow, featuring a series of re-created environments to explore these amazing organisms that generate light through a chemical reaction.

Remember the lantern fish from Finding Nemo? Learn how he, and other creatures use bioluminescence as both a predatory tool and for self-protection. There is even a display of live lantern fish. The kid in me came out with the “bioluminescent bay” interactive exhibit that shows visitors how certain microscopic plankton (okay, dinoflagellates) found in Mosquito Bay on Vieques Island in Puerto Rico, create glowing halos around anything they sense moving in the water.

Photo ©AMNH\D. Finnin

Just don’t spend too much time playing because there is so much else to see!

Oh, and cell phones/cameras must be put away for this exhibition because flashes – and even the light emitted from a cell phone – can harm the sensitive exhibits!



We love the Lyda Hill Gems and Mineral Hall, so be sure to check out the crystallized gold collection that made it’s debut in November. You know you want to spin the wheel to open the giant grape jelly geode, anyway, right?

They’ve also updated the Early Man section, where you can use brain waves to launch ping-pong balls (proving how strong-willed your children are, truly), conduct real-time DNA experiments and use a thermal camera to identify hot and cool points of your body in the Being Human Hall. (Make sure your kids open their mouths on this one for extra fun!)


Definitely leave time for The Holland Foundation Theater, too. They have FOUR great movies playing right now! I watched Jerusalem 3D, which takes you on a tour of Jerusalem through the eyes of three young women – one Muslim, one Jewish, and one Christian – who share what it means to call this ancient place home. They share celebrations and events that are special to them in the city. The film also explores the history of this beautiful place. It was breathtaking. It was also narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch, so it was lovely to listen to.

The two films that my kids will be most excited to watch are Wildest Weather in the Solar System 3D and Wonders of the Arctic 3D. National Geographic takes us on a trip through powerful and mysterious weather phenomena in the solar system, including a storm the size of a 100-megaton hydrogen bomb, a 400-year old hurricane and a dust tempest that could engulf planets! The visuals, CGI and science blend to make this a fun and exciting film that is educational and entertaining.

Polar bear lovers will delight in the Wonders of the Arctic. While exploring the Arctic, filmmakers visit the polar bear capital of the world, talk with ice scientists and join up with a beluga biologist expedition. Viewers will also learn about the role that ice plays in this environment, and of changes that are overtaking the people and animals that live here.

They have some really fun events happening over the holidays:

  • “Meet Your Mammoth Day” this Saturday, Nov 21 will include “make a mammoth” activities, mammoth toothpaste demos (I’m intrigued), bookworm readings, science trivia and Q&A with Perot Museum paleontologist Dr. Ron Tykoski.
  • First Thursday Late Night: Festive features National Geographic filmmaker Daniel Ferguson who will discuss and introduce his film Jerusalem 3D on Thursday, Dec 3 at 7pm. Other activities include making snow, creating electrical circuit cards and making tinsel float.
  • Discovery Days: Darkness will feature activities focused on nocturnal animals and creatures found deep in the ocean and inside of caves. Saturday, Dec 12 from 10am-4pm.
  • New Year’s Winter Wonderland Sleepover. On January 2, 2016, children ages 6-12 are invited to doze with the dinosaurs! Activities include behind-the-scenes after-hours access to exhibits, exclusive demonstrations, hands-on discovery plus a late night snack, a 3D film and a light breakfast.

For more information on these events and the many other activities taking place at select times during Thanksgiving break (Nov 22-29) and winter break (Dec 19-Jan 3), visit!

To make it even easier for you to visit the Perot, I have a giveaway for you! I have TWO family four-pack of Creatures of Light: Natures Bioluminescence vouchers – they include general admission and admission to Creatures of Light. One set of vouchers is valid during the holidays, and the other is valid from Jan. 11 – Feb. 21, 2016.
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I confess, since both kids are loathe to get an unexcused absence, I was able to explore the Museum on my own. What a treat! While it is always a great place for the family, I often forget how different a visit can be on your own (and I highly recommend it.) But take your family – I don’t want your kids mad at me.

I can’t wait to bring the entire family back to the Perot – there is always so much to do and see!


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