The velociraptors are lurking, the triceratops is just around the corner and kids of all ages are invited to step into the world of dinosaurs this summer, thanks to a new exhibit at Carson City's Children's Museum.
Shaped like a tree, the main exhibit includes fossils, puzzles, a special library area and a "rubbing table," where kids can copy a picture of their favorite Cretaceous creature using paper and crayon.
Posters borrowed from the Wilbur May Museum provide the backdrop, and to complete the picture, a wide range of dinosaur toys are for sale in the museum's gift shop.
Four-year-old Jonah Vandever was enjoying the dinosaur exhibit Wednesday accompanied by his mom, Steffini. She runs a licensed day care in Reno and brings her charges to the museum at least once a week.
"I like the museum because it's adaptable and gives the kids a chance to burn off some energy," she said.
Jonah had both legs amputated when he was 18 months old. He skis and speaks Spanish, Tagalog and a little French, in addition to English, according to Steffini.
On loan from the Tree House Museum in Ogden, Utah, this traveling exhibit is financed through a grant from the John Ben Snow Memorial Trust and will be in Carson City for three months. According to museum officials, it's just one of many special activities this summer.
-- There is no admission charge on Giants Day, scheduled for June 22 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Performances by Flutterby the Clown, the Blue Carrot Puppet Theater, and Mr. Roy the Magician will be complimented by a host of children's activities, including face painting and a castle bouncy house.
A trip to a Giants game at Pac Bell Park and dinner for two at Pier Market Restaurant will be raffled and many other prizes are featured in the silent auction, including bay cruises, dinners, athletic club memberships and a wine country get-away. Raffle tickets cost $1 or six for $5 and are on sale at the museum.
The event is sponsored by a number of entities, including the San Francisco Giants, Doggie Diner, the Pepsi Corp., Earthgrains, Pac Bell Park and Custom Office Supply.
-- Fourth- through eighth-graders can attend one of two science camps, scheduled July 8-12 and 15-19 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The camp features field trips to the Carson River, the Nevada State Forestry Nursery, Under One Sky Exhibit at the Nevada State Museum and Bently Nevada Corp. in Minden and costs $80 per person. Children must be preregistered.
-- Art classes will be offered Tuesday through Friday this summer from 10:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m. for children 7 and older. Offering an array of arts and crafts, the classes cost $1 each and will be taught by Elizabeth Sins.
The Children's Museum is at 813 N. Carson St. in Carson City. For information on these events and others call the museum at 884-2226.