Monday, April 18, 2011

Dinosaur Days at the Hunter Valley Gardens

On Sunday we braved the dodgy looking weather and headed up to the Hunter Valley Gardens to see the dinosaur petting zoo, not quite knowing what to expect we tried to keep our 3 year old sons expectations low and reminded him that dinosaurs were not real (we were fully expecting a brave and bolshy boy...right up until he actually saw the dinosaurs and then we would have a clingy and simpering son) and that there was nothing to be scared of to which we got the reply “I’m not scared of dinosaurs mummy” in a scornful tone.

Being prepared we booked our tickets online which really was a waste of time as there was no separate line but luckily we had got there before the rush and made our way quickly to the formal garden to get seats for the show. We started on the bench seats at the back and when Oli was feeling brave enough we made our way closer to the hay bales and stage area. We still weren’t quite sure what to expect and when the baby dinosaurs came out in their little pouches Oli was happy to go up and have a pat, a bigger dinosaur was next and it still wasn’t that scary and the puppetry was so well done we had to keep reminding Oli that the dinosaurs weren’t real.

With the Erth spokesperson giving lots of great information and providing plenty of toilet jokes for the children in the audience (I don’t think I’ve heard the words weewee and poopoo so much in such a short space of time) we finally got to the biggest dinosaur of the show (I forget their names...sorry!) When it emerged from the tent I suddenly heard a screaming child calling for his mummy, looking up I saw Oli running as fast as his little legs could carry him (prompting lots of laughter from the people he was running past) and calling out for his’s so nice to be wanted.

This dinosaur was amazing, the sounds and movements were so life-like (from what I can imagine) that it was no wonder there were children running screaming for their parents as it moved around the stage (not just my child!) Lots of fun was had with brave children offering up food, their own arms and at one stage their own heads to feed the dinosaurs and with copious amounts of laughter and screams the show finished.

Although Oli was happy to cling onto daddy for the last part of the show he has talked about nothing else since and after a quick stroll around the gardens we went across to the village for a lovely lunch, followed by a play on the playground (a quick trip to the chocolate shop by your truly) and then off home. It was a fantastic day out and if you get a chance this holiday’s to pop up and check it out it is well worth a trip. Check out the Hunter Valley Gardens for more details.

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