About 228 million years ago, the Eoraptor and Herrerasaurus were thriving in what is now Argentina. Today, replicas of the dinosaurs' skeletons are on display at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library, part of the "Origins: The Dawn of Dinosaurs," exhibit.
From July 8 to 29, the library exhibit will paint a picture of early Triassic life, displaying skeleton and flesh replicas of the Eoraptor, a skeleton replica of the Herrerasaurus, original fossil wood and volcanic ash.
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The exhibit also offers a glimpse into the expeditions with a mock tent-set up, complete with supplies, equipment and images from the discovery site in Argentina.
The dinosaurs on display are the two oldest found to date and were both completed through expeditions lead by Paul Sereno, a world renowned paleontologist who grew up in Naperville, attended Northern Illinois University and now teaches at the University of Chicago. Sereno also co-founded Project Exploration, the nonprofit science education organization that created the exhibit.
Looking for a way to provide patrons with an interesting, free exhibit, Lynne Priest, grade school programming specialist and co-curator, said she was thrilled when Friends of the Library offered to sponsor the Project Exploration display.
Priest said the exhibit gives patrons an opportunity to see something they would normally have to travel downtown to see, without the cost.
Yvette Johnson, Kids World manager at the library and one of the co-curators of the exhibit, said the display is an example of public programming at its best.
"We seek to inform, we seek to educate," she said. "We're bringing new information to a local library and it's exciting for the whole family."
The exhibit can be seen during regular library hours: 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday; and noon-5 p.m. Sunday. The Arlington Heights Memorial Library is 500 N. Dunton Ave., Arlington Heights; (847) 392-0100.