Strange creatures inspire curiosity at Cryptozoology Museum

8:02 AM, Oct 28, 2010   |    comments
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PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Curiosity about the strange creatures at the International Cryptozoology Museum always runs high during the Halloween season.

The museum's founder and director is Loren Coleman.  He has spent 50 years investigating Bigfoot and other animals that defy scientific explanation.  He calls those animals "cryptids."

News Center's Lee Nelson recently got a tour of the museum from Coleman.

The entrance is dominated by a huge Bigfoot replica.  It stands 8 feet tall and weighs 400 pounds.  It was made by a Wisconsin taxidermist using muskox hides.  Coleman said the replica was specially designed from the description of witnesses.

Some of the other Bigfoot paraphernalia on display includes casts of footprints, hair samples and a copy of the famous Patterson-Gimlin film that purports to show a female Bigfoot in the wild.

The museum has a section devoted to black panthers.  Although their existence has never been proven in North America, Coleman said people all across the U.S. have reported seeing them, making them the number one most frequently sighted cryptid.

The museum's logo is a prehistoric fish called the coelacanth.  It was thought to be extinct until a colony was discovered in 1938 in the waters around Madagascar.  Coleman said the coelacanth is proof that establed scientific concensus can sometimes be wrong.

Coleman is opening the museum free of charge to the public on Halloween from noon to 5 p.m.  Visitors who come dressed as Bigfoot or any other cryptid will also get a free book.

NEWS CENTER

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