Dino Days of Summer


Get ready to take a giant dinosaur-sized step back in time.

July 22 - August 17

Join MPM for four weeks of dino-themed programming! You'll have the chance to examine real dinosaur fossils, think like a paleontologist, and learn how these amazing creatures lived through fun activities, events, and online resources.

Enjoy Dino Days of Summer for FREE with your MPM membership! Not a member? Learn more.

Exhibits and Collections

The Torosaurus skeleton at the entrance to the Third Planet exhibit was discovered in Montana in 1981 by a Milwaukee Public Museum (MPM) expedition. The bones came from the Hell Creek Formation, the last rock unit of the Late Cretaceous, at the very end of the dinosaur era.

This specimen is important because Torosaurs are far less common than the related dinosaur Triceratops, and this was the first-ever found in Montana. More importantly, this was the only specimen with significant post-cranial (behind-the-skull) remains; most Torosaurs are represented by skulls only. This skull, nearly nine feet long and eight feet wide, is one of the largest dinosaur skulls ever found.

Hell Creek

Within the Third Planet exhibit is a life-size recreation of a lowland forest floodplain in Hell Creek, Montana, where visitors will encounter T. rex feeding upon a dead Triceratops. The Dromaeosaur dinosaurs wait patiently nearby to scavenge, while the speedy Struthiomimus watches from a sand island in the stream. The scene includes sounds and lighting to represent a thunderstorm overhead.
Pachycephalosaur Skull

This skull of a Pachycephalosaur, a dinosaur that had a distinctive dome-shaped head, was recovered in 1985 as part of a former MPM citizen science program called Dig-A-Dino. This program was focused on dinosaur abundance and diversity at the end of the Cretaceous period, with a particular focus on the Hell Creek Formation. This specimen is one of two Pachycephalosaur skulls housed within our collections. Both have been studied to understand the anatomy and physiology of these dinosaurs. Studying these specimens, paleontologists have refined their understanding of their behaviors and that their skulls were most likely used for display behaviors (think brightly colored feathers of birds) rather than for headbutting and territorial behaviors.

Dome Theater Shows

Daily, the Daniel M. Soref Dome Theater will show:

Did an Asteroid Really Kill the Dinosaurs?
Did an Asteroid Really Kill the Dinosaurs?

Showtime: Noon

Showtimes: 11 a.m., 12:45 p.m., and 4:30 p.m.

Bonus Onsite Learning

MPM Educators will be on the exhibit floors Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to noon and 1 to 3 p.m., to engage visitors in additional learning opportunities about the following topics, based on daily availabilities:

Fossil Challenge

What is a fossil? Put your paleontologist skills to the test and try deciphering which objects are fossils, which are not, and why!

Dino or Di-No?

We all think we're experts on dinosaurs, but does our knowledge stand up to the geological pressure when put to the test? Learn what sets dinosaurs apart from other prehistoric creatures.


Did you ever wonder how dinosaurs got their names? Learn about how scientists name species and put it to practice by creating your own dino name!

Mary Anning, Paleontologist Extraordinaire

Learn about Mary Anning, 19th-century fossilist, geologist, and paleontologist. Dig through her famous finds to unearth your paleontology skills!

Special Events
Family Dino Trivia NightFamily Dino Trivia Night

Are you a Di-know-it-all?

Test your Di-knowledge at Family Trivia Night! Compete for the ultimate bragging rights as the MPM Dino Trivia Champ. Recommended for dino experts ages 6 and up.

Date and Time

Thursday, July 25
6 - 8 p.m.

Cost and Reservations

$15 per person

Get Tickets

Additional Resources

“The beautiful thing about science is it's constantly evolving and it's never static." Learn about paleontologists' changing understandings of what the Dromaeosaur looked like through MPM's three different models on display.