“Mammoths and Mastodons: At La Brea Tar Pits” Now on View

For one who explores LA as much as I do you’d think I’d have long ago visited all the major attractions. For the most part, yes, but there are a token few spots that have eluded my grasp. For many years the most obvious was the La Brea Tar Pits. I know! It’s an LA icon and, goodness knows, I’ve been to the adjacent LACMA countless times. Yet, it was just one of those places I never seemed to get to. But that (finally!) changed last month when I was invited to view Mammoths and Mastodons: At La Brea Tar Pits.

The La Brea Tar Pits are utterly unique. What other major city has active, bubbling asphalt seeps that consistently reveal Ice Age fossils smack dab in the middle of it? It’s a one of a kind spot and was fascinating to visit on an early morning.

Adjacent to the active pits is a museum with an array of those excavated fossils on display. That alone is cool but recently the museum opened an new exhibit Mammoths and Mastodons: At La Brea Tar Pits that’s filled with life-sized models and and interactive activities.

Mammoths and Mastodons originated at Chicago’s Field Museum and offers an interactive look at the creatures of the Ice Age – several of which have been found in the adjacent tar pits.

Interspersed among authentic fossils the exhibit gives visitors a glimpse into how these ancient creatures live all those ages ago.

Fossils are fascinating but it’s often hard to picture the living, breathing animals they once were. The life-sized models on display provide a good idea of what LA’s ancient inhabitants once looked like. Let me just say, I’m glad they’re not walking around now!

In addition there are several kiosks offering interactive activities so visitors can step into a mammoth’s shoes. That bale of hay is much heavier than it looks!

It took me a long time to get to the La Brea Tar Pits and I’m glad I finally made it. Mammoths and Mastodons: At La Brea Tar Pits certainly enhanced my visit and it’s perfect for kids of all ages. It will be on display for about a year and is accompanied by a 3-D film Titans of the Ice Age. That should make for a pretty fun outing if I don’t say so myself!

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