Dinny the dinosaur (still) held hostage

A couple of years ago, after hearing that creationists had purchased Dinny the dinosaur and converted perverted him—and his sidekick Rex—into tools for peddling their rank ignorance, I went out to Cabazon to see for myself how badly they had been abused. What I found was not happy-making, nor would it be for anyone who cares about knowledge, science and truth, or who finds the thought of children being mislead distressing.

What I found was that Dinny had not only been taken hostage by creationists but judging by their posted material, creationists who seem to be enamored with the “teachings” of some of creationism’s lowest common denominators; professional hucksters such as (the felonious) “Dr.” Kent Hovind and “Dr.,” Carl Baugh, two people that even other young earth creationists (YEC) tend to distance themselves from.

Even worse they seemed to be doing fairly good business as they were in the process of expanding the attraction by adding a number of decently executed life size dinosaur models.

Dinny the dinosaur (foreground) and Rex (background).

As I said that was two years ago. Last summer my wife Kathy and I happened to find ourselves not far from Cabazon and I figured we should swing by and see what new devilry might have befallen Dinny.

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Dinny the dinosaur, a fond childhood memory defiled

Since at least 1975 anyone driving on Interstate 10 through the tiny truck stop of a town of Cabazon California (about 15 miles west of Palm Springs) could catch a glimpse of an amazing sight; a massive, larger even than life, concrete replica of a Jurassic dinosaur Apatosaurus (Brontosaurus) named “Dinny” the dinosaur.

Dinny was the creation of Claude Bell (1897-1988) an artist who had once worked for Knotts Berry Farm in Buena Park, CA, and later ran the Wheel Inn truck stop next door to the dinosaur. Starting in 1964 it took him eleven years to construct and reportedly cost upwards of $250 thousand dollars. It about 150 feet long and weighs in at more than 100 tons.

Dinny the dinosaur

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