Thursday, December 9, 2010

A Museum Day

On Wednesday, since it was a beautiful day, we decided to drive into Denver and visit the Museum of Nature and Science. This amazing skeleton greeted us as we entered the building. It was a day for school kids, too, as the place was swarming with them. 
(Click to enlarge any of these photos.)

Neither of us are enthusiastic museum-goers, but we both were very impressed with the displays. There was so much to see that we only got to a small portion of it. The nature displays were awesome! There were animals and birds from all over the world, all very life-like. What amazed me was seeing the real plants, grasses, flowers, and trees in the foreground, all preserved somehow,  and in the background paintings so skillfully done that we could hardly tell where the real left off and the painting began. This display was in the Botswana, Africa section.

Again, isn't the background beautiful? Here is the American Bald Eagle. Each display was enclosed in glass. I was able to take these pictures without using my flash.

There was an American Indian collection of displays, too. Here is Keith checking out a 'hogan' from the Ute tribe. The Utes inhabited most of Utah and Colorado.

The Museum is located in the huge City Park in downtown Denver. Also on the property is the Denver Zoo, a large golf course, 2 lakes, and miles of walking and biking trails.  We discovered that up on the 4th floor of the museum there was an open observation deck, which overlooked the lakes and the skyline of Denver with the gorgeous Rocky Mountains framing the city. We spent some time up there admiring the beauty and taking these photos.

Here is my favorite shot! The Park was inhabited by thousands, and I mean thousands, of Canada Geese! They were everywhere, flying in groups, honking, landing on the lakes and all around the trails and lawns. We were told they stay all winter. They know they are safe in the Park.

Leaving the City Park we drove around the downtown. The State Capitol has beautiful grounds, but is dwarfed by the tall, more modern buildings all around it. At one time it must have been the most imposing edifice in the city. We plan to go inside, maybe on another trip.

Here is the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception. This is an awesome structure, the largest Catholic Church in Colorado, also right in the middle of the downtown. I would love to go inside. Notice the 'One Way' sign seeming to point to the church! As with the Capitol, one cannot get a good photo of the entire church because of the huge buildings and many signs and traffic around it. I photographed it by sections.

 Heading for home we drove back through the City Park to get a closer look at a building we'd seen from the observation deck. We passed by these barren trees and had to get a photo of them. They are filled with nests of some kind which are probably hidden from view when the leaves are on the trees. I wonder if they will be used in the spring? It must be a bird condominium! We returned home to Strasburg very satisfied with today's excursion into the big city. What will we find there next? I'll be sure to blog about it!

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