The Dinosaur Walk was not the only child friendly place we visited in Riverhead. Just down Main Street, (that was frankly less quaint than expected) stands the (if not glorious, then shining in comparison) aquarium. Outside we were greeted by sea lions, inside we were greeted by throngs of kids with parents wiser than the ones we encountered down the street. The main rooms have several hands-on exhibits, and I didn't push kids out of the way to touch the star fish and crabs, I waited my turn and didn't cry as a stoic example to my younger co-curious minds.
In the inner depths are several tanks filled with oddities and more, and one holds the awesomely strange and purple octopus. But the real treat of the day was the tank full of sharks. It really was awe inspiring and I wish a lady with, honestly, the worst voice I have ever heard in my entire life hadn't been there to shatter the otherwise tranquil experience.
Just as we were about to leave we were informed (by PA) that the seal show was to begin. As die hard pessimists we assumed it cost more money (we'd become much less free with our dollars after handing over so much already). But the show was free! What a pleasant surprise. Java was our entertainer and Amy, whom we made up opposing pretend backgrounds for, was his trainer. Jim saw a bad boyfriend and some slutty fiends, while I thought she was more into her grandma and mom.
One thing we could all agree on (including the announcer, Candace, who used the phrase over and over) was that Java was “aaawfully silly!! ” This is a great place to take the kids… that we don't have. And the drive, through Long Island vineyard country, is a beautiful one.