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Dinosaur State Park, Rocky Hill

4.3
#1 of 6 in Things to do in Rocky Hill
Natural History Museum · Hidden Gem · Specialty Museum
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In August of 1966, bulldozer operator Edward McCarthy was excavating a rocky site for a state building. He turned over a slab of gray sandstone and saw something very exciting: six large, three-toed footprints. Within a few weeks of the discovery, state officials decided to preserve the site as a state park. Two seasons of careful excavation resulted in one of the largest on-site displays of dinosaur tracks in the world. Fossil tracks are named independently from fossil animals. No skeletal remains were found at the Rocky Hill site so scientists speculate that the animal was similar to Dilophosaurus based on the shape and size of the footprints and the age of the sandstone where they are found. Come learn all about it during a track talk!

The Park offers school field trips for grades 1 and up during the school year. As well as family-oriented programming on weekends, school vacations, and during the summer months.

The anniversary celebration will include a “First 50” giveaway one Saturday a month for the first 50 families that pay admission on that day. The dates will be posted by the end of 2015. The giveaways will not be posted until the day of the events but will include a different item each month. Books, videos, posters, and dinosaur toys are examples of some of the items that will be given away. The park will have several days where admission will be free over the summer months. These dates will be posted after the New Year and will include Connecticut Open House Day in June and Dinosaur State Park Day in August. Lectures, animal programs, book signings, and other special programs sponsored by our Friends group will take place throughout the year. You will want to visit over and over again!
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Dinosaur State Park reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
257 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • This place has just the right amount of inside stuff and outside stuff for a quick and easy diversion. Some short hiking trails and a small but well done set of inside exhibits (including some live.....  more
    This place has just the right amount of inside stuff and outside stuff for a quick and easy diversion. Some short hiking trails and a small but well done set of inside exhibits (including some live.....  more »
  • What is very intriguing is that the museum was built where the fossilized dinosaur footprints were found (as opposed to moving the footprints to a museum elsewhere). You can look around, look at the.....  more
    What is very intriguing is that the museum was built where the fossilized dinosaur footprints were found (as opposed to moving the footprints to a museum elsewhere). You can look around, look at the.....  more »
Google
  • Dinosaur State Park is a must-visit destination if you are in the area and/or have an avid dinosaur lover in your family. Come for the history, stay for the nature walk. Enjoyable trails suitable for a variety of hikers. The exhibit hall and a portion of trail are wheelchair and stroller accessible, but most of the trails are not wheel friendly. It's a wonderful place to meet with family and friends and have an outdoor picnic and enjoy the beautiful natural environment - just do not plan to visit on a Monday because they are closed Mondays.
  • Cool, but small park. Note: the indoor pavillion is closed for the summer of 2022. The sign says closed until Aug 1st, but the guides said September 1st. They have some fun interactive activities. Good for an hour or so.

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