In my opinion, only the South has perfected the art of combining natural history, American history, and tourist traps into a glorious, enriching entanglement that warms my heart. Just check out places like Pigeon Forge, Rock City, Stone Mountain (also doubling as one of the largest granite outcrops), and Williamsburg’s Bush Gardens if you’re prepared to be dazzled. The Midwest may have a ball of twine and a corn palace, but lacks the battlefields and topography-related beauty that can be offered by the South. As a state rich in American history, Virginia has unabashedly embraced this glorious Southern tradition. In central Virginia there is a hidden jewel (unless you were lucky enough to go to school 13 miles away) known as Natural Bridge. Natural Bridge plays host to many natural wonders such as the namesake rock bridge (there actually used to be a road that ran on top of it…until the Balrog got out of hand), and the Natural Bridge zoo (trying hard to recreate the natural habitats of its inhabitants). And in this world of natural beauty, my two favorite subjects embrace in a truly inspired merging of science and culture: dinosaurs and The War of Northern Aggression. In Dinosaur Kingdom (part of the Natural Bridge attractions), dinosaurs are waging war on tyrant Yankee soldiers, thus completing my soul.
Here’s the set up: “It's 1863 and Union soldiers have discovered a hidden valley filled with dinosaurs. Now the Yankees plan to use the dinos as weapons of mass destruction against the South.” Dinosaurs aren't just eating people, they're eating Yankees. Nothing likes to be used and have their state’s rights taken away.
Through Dinosaur Kingdom, dinosaurs can be seen plucking and eating Union soldier from horses, attacking Union soldiers in the outhouse, exacting revenge for a stolen egg (did those silly Yankees not see Jurassic Park III??), being ineffectively lassoed, and generally kicking the asses of the attempting Northern oppressors. All creationists should visit this park for a first-hand depiction of why human and dinosaurs never could have lived together – either dinosaurs would have driven human extinction, or the South would have won The War. As roadsideamerica.com so aptly and insightfully put it: “Dinosaur Kingdom is a twist on the biblical Creationist view that people and dinosaurs lived together. Here, people live with dinosaurs -- but only until the dinosaurs eat them.” I am dinosaur hear me whistle Dixie.
And for the record, I never doubted which side dinosaurs would have been on.
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