Local kids clamor to visit this offbeat minizoo, home to the largest collection in North America of live tropical insects. You can even hold many of the 70 or so varieties, which include walking sticks, scorpions, millipedes, and a pharnacia—at 22 inches, the world's longest insect. The staff members know their bug lore and are happy to dispense scientific information as well as creepy crawly anecdotes.
Feb 17, 2006
My wife & I (early 40's) and 2 boys (10 & 13) went here a year ago after reading a favorable review in seattle newspaper. It is a smallish room with glassed cases around the room. Just looking in the cases would be ho-hum, but join the group as the guide makes his/her way around each exhibit for a fascinating learning experience. They provide interesting insight into each creature, and about 90% of them are taken out and offered for you to hold.
After seeing 2 year olds holding hugh cockroaches and the like, you finally get your own nerve up to hold them yourself (black widow, scorpion, big beetles, etc.). It sounds creepy, but it is quite fascinating. It took some coaxing but I was even able to get the rest of the family to hold some of the bugs as the tour went on.