Well, this sounds pretty cool. Rowan University has broken ground on a new dinosaur museum. The $73 million, 44,000-square-foot Jean and Ric Edelman Museum will be located in the 65-acre Fossil Park in Mantua, and is scheduled to open in 2023.

The museum is being funded in part by a $25 million gift from the Edelmans that was given to the park to develop it as a unique research ecosystem that supports scientific, undergraduate and "citizen science" opportunities.

According to a statement, the school said: Visitors will enter land and sea galleries of the Late Cretaceous worlds and wonder at the hyper-local focus, like a recreated Brontosaurus, the first discovered tyrannosaur, which was found just a mile from the Fossil Park site in 1866, and a 53-foot mosasaur, like one discovered at the site, "that swam through the seas, right where you are sitting."

Other installations at the museum include the Hall of Cretaceous Seas, the Hall of Extinction and Hope, the Discovery Forest, and Critter Cove which will contain sea and land animals with genetic connections to the site during the Late Cretaceous era. There will also be a Fossil Research Workshop, a virtual reality chamber, Café, museum store, paleo-themed playground and nature trails.

Research at the park is led by Dr. Kenneth Lacovara of Rowan; he said, “We are building a museum like no other, on a fossil site of global importance that will connect visitors to the ancient past, to the thrill of discovery and to Rowan University."

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle. Any opinions expressed are Bill Doyle's own.

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