Second annual Greenfield Dinofest Saturday

  • Art like the dinosaur on Poet’s Seat Tower will be on display this weekend as part of the second annual Great Greenfield Dinofest on Saturday. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

  • People will have the opportunity to learn about Dexter Marsh, a man who found dinosaur footprints in Greenfield, at the second annual Great Greenfield Dinofest on Saturday. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

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Staff Writer
Published: 10/4/2018 10:32:39 PM

GREENFIELD — Move over “Jurassic World” — the dinosaurs at the Great Greenfield DinoFest are coming back for an all-day festival on Saturday to celebrate the Pioneer Valley’s dinosaur history.

The free event blends history, science, art and community for a day full of activities centered around local large lizards.

Tim Neumann, of the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, said the event is part of the group’s off-site outreach in partnership with Piti Theatre.

“We try to take the museum to the community in multiple ways,” Neumann said.

He said the event centers around a point in Greenfield’s history where paleontology wasn’t considered a science and the word dinosaur didn’t exist.

The dinosaur festival aims to encourage people, children especially, to have an interest in science and learn about the community’s history with Jurassic creatures.

“It’s important for children to be encouraged to have an interest in science,” Neumann said.

Jonathan Mirin of Piti Theatre said the event also connects to current environmental issues through the topic of extinction, which lead to this year’s new addition of an art exhibit.

“Dinosaurs were the fifth extinction; we’re currently in the sixth extinction with how many animals and plants are disappearing forever because of humans,” Mirin said. “There a connection between making and celebrating the past with an eye toward sustainability.”

Mirin said he went to elementary schools throughout the Frontier School District, presented fossils and asked students to paint or draw something that would encourage people to take care of the planet.

“Now we have inspiring paintings and drawings that will be on display,” Mirin said.

Mirin said the DinoFest is an event for the community to “come together to think about local history from 200 million years ago to roughly 150 years ago and the people in the region that helped found the science of paleontology.”

The schedule of events begins at Hawks & Reed with a Brontosaurus Brunch running from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The brunch is a buffet-style meal featuring dishes like primordial soup, plant eaters delight (broccoli trees growing from a bed of rice), dinosaur eggs and more, which will be sourced from mainly organic and local ingredients. Brunch is $10 for adults and $5 for children. Tickets are available online and at the door. A brunch ticket is not required for admission to performances.

“Greenfield’s Grumpiest T-Rex,” musical theater performance by Piti Theatre’s Youth Troupe will start at 11 a.m. The performance features Northampton singer-songwriter Carrie Ferguson and is about a group of dinosaurs who discover some ingenious ways to make Sue, the local T-Rex, less grumpy.

At noon, DinoMovies with live music will begin.

Media artist Lysha Smith’s clips from dinosaur movies as far back as 1914’s “Gertie the Dinosaur” features a live score by adventurous Pioneer Valley musicians, including Smith, Carrie Ferguson, cellist Wayne Smith, pianist Laura Josephs and guitarist Eric Lemm.

At the Second Congregational Church from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m,. a Jurassic Roadshow interactive exhibit by Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association and the church will be staffed by experts in geology, fossil, local history and dinosaurs. Some of those experts helped create PVMA’s website: dinotracksdiscovery.org. Activities will include fossil finds, Cabinet of Curiosities, face painting, mask making and dino games.

In the Memorial Hall at 170 Main St. in Deerfield, the Dinos for Change Exhibition will hold an opening reception at 1:30 p.m. The exhibit will have art by area students answering the question, “If you could create something that would inspire people to take care of our planet, what would you paint, draw, sculpt or write?”

Neumann said for those unable to attend, or who want to learn more about dinosaurs, the exhibit will be up throughout October and also has hands-on children’s activities.

At the Greenfield Historical Society at 43 Church St. in Greenfield, there will be information about Dexter Marsh and some fossilized prints from 2 to 5 p.m.




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