Must-See, FREE Dinosaur Giants Exhibit at Gail Borden Library

Must-See, FREE Dinosaur Giants Exhibit at Gail Borden Library

Looking for a “wow” day trip for your kids this summer that doesn’t cost a dime?

There’s a must-see exhibit right now at the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin that will have them talking for days.

Library officials have announced that Dinosaur Giants: An Exhibit from the Sereno Fossil Lab is now open at the library, located at 270 N. Grove, Elgin. The exhibit will be on display through Sept. 24 and is supported by Elgin State Bank, the Gail Borden Public Library Foundation, EFS Foundation, Seigle Family Foundation, Palmer Foundation, the KCT Credit Union and many volunteers.

The towering life-size 33-foot-tall, 60-foot-long Jobaria skeleton rears from the first floor into the second floor. Jobaria is joined by the Carcharodontosaurus skull. The skull will immediately show viewers why this meat eater is known as the “shark-toothed reptile.”

Dinosaur Giants is the inspiring and updated story of the discovery of Africa’s Cretaceous-age dinosaurs by a Chicago paleontologist and his students. Set inside the beautiful spaces of the Gail Borden Library, the towering skeletons, real fossils, and expedition images and video create a most attractive learning environment.

Dinosaur Giants showcases groundbreaking discoveries that transport library visitors to a prehistoric world more than 100 million years old. It is based on its very popular forerunner in 2005, an exhibit fondly remembered by a generation of families from Elgin and well beyond.

The bizarre long-necked “Mesozoic cow” (Nigersaurus) is a centerpiece of the fully revamped and updated displays. It is on exhibit for the first time in the United States, said paleontologist Dr. Paul Sereno, co-creator of the exhibit.

“We anticipate Dinosaur Giants to have a major educational and cultural impact on Elgin during the four months it will reside in the library. I look forward to working closely with library staff and community educators to make sure this exhibit has lasting impact,” Sereno said.

Library Director Carole Medal said she’s grateful to the sponsors and volunteers for making this opportunity available.

“Being able to showcase an exhibit of this caliber is thrilling,” she said. “It provides our community with a world-class educational and artistic experience — right in their own library. We also have tremendous resources for people to explore further.”

Jean Bednar, Library Board president, added that this is exhibit is truly one-of-a-kind with considerable educational value.

“People will come in to see these impressive dinosaurs and discover all of the great reads and cutting-edge technology that this library has to offer,” Bednar said.

Sereno says he love partnering with the library.

“The goal is to bring these very personal discoveries of mine to life, to share with young and old the thrill and adventure the of expeditions, and to tell the story of dinosaur life on Africa,” he said. “It’s  just a great teaching tool.”

Exhibit Highlights

  • Life-size Skulls & Skeletons
  • Jobaria skeleton (adult)
  • Afrovenator skeleton
  • Suchomimus skeleton
  • Nigersaurus skeleton
  • Pterosaur flesh model
  • Carcharodontosaurus skull
  • Real Fossil Material
  • Jobaria touch femur
  • Fossil wood
  • Other Objects
  • Expedition images with captions
  • Jobaria scale flesh model
  • Dissected Jobaria neck
  • Jobaria juvenile touch skull
  • Femur bench
  • Photo station (Jobaria femora)

Benefits of the Exhibit

  • Provides an extraordinary opportunity for education with actual artifacts and replicas supported by library collections and programming.
  • Promotes literacy by creating an interest in reading and learning more about dinosaurs and the world in which they lived.
  • Brings together people of all ages and cultures to experience the magnificent creatures that have fascinated and aroused curiosity for generations.
  • Creates excitement in the community and highlights the revitalization of downtown Elgin.
  • Makes a positive impact on the Elgin economy with the number of people who visit the city to view the exhibit.
  • Enables residents in the Elgin and Fox Valley area to enjoy this unique experience right in their own back yard!

Check out more photos on Flickr!