But that’s not exactly what happened. See, the place was teeming with people. Even before it opened at 9:30 a.m. I know it’s not true, but it felt like everyone with kids in Los Angeles was there. It made trying to navigate a 5 ½ year old and a stroller through the packed halls virtually impossible.
And so I did what any sane person in my situation might do. I ditched the fair and enjoyed the rest of the museum instead.
Which explains how the butterflies wound up stealing the show.
The museum’s Pavilion of Wings is a seasonal event that houses more than 40 different butterfly and moth species from all over the U.S. The outdoor, walk-through exhibit requires timed entry tickets, which means that the Pavilion has only a limited number of visitors inside at any one time.
While inside, the kids wandered through the dirt paths searching for butterflies, snails, spiders and whatever other fun things they could find. The little explorer was enthralled immediately, yelling “look, look ... butterflies!” and pointing every which way he turned.
The cool weather worked in our favor; the butterflies weren’t fluttering around, but instead were sitting still, making them easy to spot and photograph. The big explorer used his best hunting skills to seek out butterflies in all kinds of hiding spaces.
What adds even more interest to the Pavilion is that it houses butterflies at various stages in their life cycle, so you might see caterpillars, new butterflies and adults. And because you get such up close views, you can actually watch as caterpillars feed on plant leaves and butterflies get nectar from flowers.
I think the kids especially enjoyed this visit because we recently raised caterpillars and released our own butterflies. In fact, the big explorer’s favorite sighting of the morning was a no-brainer: the American Painted Lady butterfly just like the ones we raised from caterpillars!
The Pavilion of Wings is open now through September 6, 2010. I highly recommend a visit, maybe even more than one! In addition to your museum entrance fee, there is a charge of $3 for adults and $1 for kids ages 5 and up.