A 4-foot-tall dinosaur waddled around Ogden’s George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park with a pumpkin candy bucket, and the costumed boy wasn’t alone — dozens of children explored the grounds of the park after sundown for the park’s annual Halloween Carnivore Carnival.
Illuminated by 10 thousand strands of light, the carnival was open 6:30–8:30 p.m. every weekend during the Halloween season. Life-sized dinosaur statues weren’t the only things hidden in the shadows—tombstones were scattered across the grounds featuring phrases like, “The raptors left me for dead.”
The Dinosaur Park’s Director of Education and Paleontologist Jeff Bond said the ambiance of the park is one of his favorite parts of the carnival. Bond has worked at the park for four years.
He gave a presentation on “creepy” creatures at the event, informing audiences about strange creatures and deadly prehistoric animals, including the megalodon shark.
Bond enjoyed how his presentation afforded him time to research and learn things himself, enabling him to educate children and adults alike.
“I do feel like science education is an increasingly important part of our society, and I’m really passionate about paleontology being kind of the gateway to that. Paleontology is a science that kind of plugs into all the other sciences,” said Bond.
Ben Saunders and his wife, Debra, took their three kids to the carnival for the first time last weekend.
The presentation “was pretty cool when he showed us the cockroaches,” their 10-year-old daughter, Shaylee, said.
“Overall, it was good. Hopefully, next year, we’ll come on time. There’s a lot of stuff,” said Ben Saunders. He especially enjoyed getting to see his kids get involved in the activities.
The newest feature of the carnival is the Science Education Center Fair where volunteers demonstrated science experiments and helped kids make science crafts.
Deloy Peel, 24, is an avid volunteer at the Dinosaur Park. His favorite part of the carnival was witnessing the merriment of the guests.
“It’s fun. It’s educational. Watching all the little kids smile — what’s not fun about that?” said Peel.
The last days of the carnival were Oct. 28 and 29. For more information on future events, visit dinosaurpark.org.