Jan. 26—Nicholas G. Schaefer has always been obsessed with dinosaurs.
It's fitting that he is a customer experience specialist for education with "Jurassic Quest."
The traveling show will make Albuquerque its home for three days beginning on Friday, Jan. 28, at Expo New Mexico, 300 San Pedro NE.
Schaefer is known to audiences as Prehistoric Nick because he is a fossil expert and dinosaur trainer.
"I make educational content and talk about the dinosaurs," he says.
"Jurassic Quest" is one of the first indoor family edutainment shows to relaunch since March 2020 due to the pandemic and will open indoors with its most beloved and unique experiences for the whole family including more than 100 life-like dinosaurs, dinosaur-themed rides, live dinosaur shows, interactive science and art activities, a "Triceratots" soft play area for our littlest explorers, bounce houses and inflatable attractions (socks required) and photo opportunities.
Visitors will get to walk through the Cretaceous, Jurassic and Triassic periods to see the dinos that ruled on land, and "deep dive" into the "Ancient Oceans" exhibit to come face to face with the largest apex predator that ever existed — a moving, life-size, 50-foot-long megalodon. They will also get to meet the babies, hatched only at "Jurassic Quest" — Cammie the Camarasaurus, Tyson the T-Rex and Trixie the Triceratops — and, you may even catch one of the star dino trainers: Safari Sarah, Dino Dustin, Captain Caleb, Prehistoric Nick or Park Ranger Marty.
Visitors will also get to interact with trainers, baby dinos and watch a "live" Raptor show.
Schaefer says dinosaurs capture many imaginations.
"They are amazing and are exotic," he says. "They walked the same planet that we walk on today."
Schaefer has worked with "Jurassic Quest" since 2016 and he used to tour with the company until 2020.
He now creates content for the traveling show and is in charge of the Dinosaur Text Line with Park Ranger Marty. Visitors can text 844-DINO-411 for any dinosaur questions to be answered.
"The text line is a fun way to interact and educated," he says. "It's one of the many cool things that the show offers."
Schaefer is originally from Connecticut, where the Dinosaur State Park and Arboretum is located.
The state park protects one of the largest dinosaur track sites in North America. The park was created in recognition of fossil trackways embedded in sandstone from the beginning of the Jurassic period, about 200 million years ago. It was uncovered in 1966.
"I remember seeing it when I was little and that was the thing that stuck with me," he says. "New Mexico has its own rich history when it comes to dinosaurs. It will be great to have the show there and educate visitors some more all while seeing these amazing creatures."
WHEN: 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 28 and Saturday, Jan. 29; 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 30
WHERE: Expo New Mexico, 300 San Pedro NE
HOW MUCH: $36 kids unlimited rides, $22 kids standard and adult; $19 seniors at jurassicquest.com. Masks are required indoors and tickets are sold by timed entry.