3 New Dinos Join Western Michigan University’s FREE Dinosaur Park

Western Michigan University Dinosaur Park

Cover photo: WMU Facilities Management

Travel Back in Prehistoric Time with Dinosaur Park

Do you have a kid that digs dinos?

Western Michigan University’s Dinosaur Park has become one of our favorite dinosaur exhibits in Michigan. It started with six prehistoric residents in 2021.

These scale-model replicas are free to visit and offer an immersive experience for future paleontologists, geologists and other curious visitors.

The group of dinosaurs grew by 15 feet in June of 2022 with the addition of a massive Brachiosaurus.

But the dinos aren’t done with us yet. Thanks to a generous, local donation, Dinosaur Park’s pack now includes 10 members after three more dinosaurs were installed in March 2024.

Dinosaur Park Credit: Western Mich Facilities Mgmt
image: WMU Facilities Management

Meet the New Dinosaurs

Due to the generosity of the Kalamazoo Geological and Mineral Society (KGMS), three new statues have joined Dinosaur Park.

The trio includes one Allosaurus (pictured) and two Dilophosaurus statues.

You may recall the Dilophosaurus from some pretty dramatic moments in the original Jurassic Park movie.

While they did live in the Jurassic period, much of their depiction was untrue: Dilophosauruses did not spit poison and were much larger than shown in the film. However, it did make for some pretty memorable scenes!

Dinosaur Park Western Michigan University
image: Lloyd Schmaltz Geology and Mineral Museum 
image: WMU Facilities Management

What is the KGMS?

The Kalamazoo Geological and Mineral Society (KGMS) is 501(c)(3) educational organization whose main purpose is to further interest in gems, minerals, geology, paleontology, and lapidary arts.

KGMS’s philanthropy does not end with these dinosaurs. This group regularly donates funds to support WMU’s students through scholarships and research grants.

This club has been in Kalamazoo for over 65 years; they also host the annual Kalamazoo Rock and Mineral Show at the Expo Center (May 3-5, 2024) and have a FREE kids club!

KGMS meets the first Tuesday of the month at The Portage Senior Center at 7:00PM, with social time at 6:30 PM. They are always open to new members.

Why Did KGMS Donate 3 Dinosaurs?

We had the pleasure of speaking with David Haas, KGMS President, about the dinosaurs:

“Western Michigan has been such an incredible partner with KGMS for decades. This is one way we could give back to the university.”

Haas also indicated the desire to educate younger generations:

“We would love to inspire children to pursue the natural sciences as a career. Dinosaur Park is one way to get kids excited about geology and related fields.”

Where is Dinosaur Park?

Dinosaur Park is located behind Rood Hall and Lee Honors College on Western Michigan University’s campus.

The dinosaurs are all outside and FREE to visit, all year round.

Dinosaur Park Western Michigan University

Where to Park

Most parking lots are by permit only on Western’s campus, so follow all posted signs.

The closest parking lot is behind Sangren Hall or near the Bernhard Center.

For additional information, visit the Parking Services website.

map: Western Michigan University Campus Maps

How Many Different Dinosaurs Can We See?

There are eight different types of dinosaurs:
1 – Brachiosaurus
2 – Spinosaurus
3 – Triceratops
4 – Stegosaurus
5 – Utahraptor
6 – Parasaurolophus
7 – Allosaurus
8 – Dilophosaurus

There are two Utahraptors and two Dilophosauruses, bringing the total statue count to 10.

Utahraptors at Dinosaur Park
Dinosaur Park Western Michigan University

How Big are the Dinosaurs?

Bigger than a breadbox- or a fourth-grader.

These scale-model sculptures are large enough to enjoy visiting, but not so large that kids find them scary.

The Stegosaurus is taller than a fourth-grader, even on tiptoes.

Safety Note: The dinosaurs are definitely a “look but don’t touch” exhibit. There are signs posted to remind visitors not to touch or climb on the statues.

Can We Learn More About the Dinosaurs?

Each dinosaur includes a sign with facts about the animal including its speed, diet, and prehistoric time period.

Dinosaur Park Western Michigan University

Dinosaur Park is Still Evolving

Although dinosaurs are extinct, this park is still undergoing its own evolution.

While the pandemic slowed its initial momentum, Western Michigan’s Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences continues expanding Dinosaur Park.

This means more dinosaurs, plant life, lighting, and geological installations.

Dinosaur Park Western Michigan University

Make a Museum Stop

Since you’re next door to Rood Hall, stop by The Schmaltz Geology and Mineral Museum, located on the first floor of the building.

Museum Collections include the following:
• The Kelley Collection of fossil and modern shark teeth
• The James Duncan mineral and agate collection
• A Michigan copper boulder
• An ultraviolet fluorescent display
• Mastodon fossils from Van Buren County, MI
• World-class fossil and mineral specimens
• An interactive augmented reality sandbox

Museum Hours: Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Classes are held throughout the day at Rood Hall, so visitors are asked to be mindful of that during their visit.

Have you Visited Dinosaur Park?

Leave us a comment with your experience and let us know how it went!

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11 thoughts on “3 New Dinos Join Western Michigan University’s FREE Dinosaur Park”

    1. Any day or time! They are outside, so families can visit whenever they want. Parking on campus is easier on weekends, so that may be more convenient.

    1. Avatar photo

      The dinosaurs are now residents on Western Michigan’s campus. We don’t think they are going anywhere!

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      We’ve linked to Western’s parking department in this article for more specifics. Parking is easier on weekends when school is not in session.

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