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Titanic and ‘Bodies’ exhibits will stay, for a little longer, in Buena Park

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Costa Mesa High School freshmen honors students, from right, Joe Bovaird and Caedmon Fisher get a close look at a human specimen showing the body’s four muscle layers at “Bodies: The Exhibition” in Buena Park on Nov. 18. 

(Kevin Chang / Weekend)

Premier Exhibitions Inc. announced Monday that it has worked out an arrangement with Buena Park to keep its “Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition” and “Bodies: The Exhibition” in the city for the next several months.

The exhibits were to have vacated the property, at 7711 Beach Blvd., at the beginning of January but now will have until April 17.

The “Bodies” exhibit offers a close-up look at the human body through a display of human specimens that have undergone a plastination preservation process. This exhibit has been touted as an educational aid for young students on up to pre-med level.

“This is exciting news,” said Kelsey Duckett, local spokeswoman for the Atlanta-based company. “We’re already booking schools for the next four months. This buys us some time to continue to look for a place, to scout out various locations. Hopefully, we won’t be shipping things back to Atlanta.”

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Ruben Lopez, Buena Park’s economic development administrator, said Arizona-based Butterfly Pavilion LLC wasn’t ready to move into the spot, leading the city to offer the extension to Premier. The next tenant plans a grand lobby with aquarium, restaurant and retail area; a 3-D movie theater showing the flight of the monarch butterfly; and an atrium where thousands of live butterflies will flutter around, Lopez said.

In May 2007, the city’s now-defunct Redevelopment Agency acquired the 8.74-acre site of the former Movieland Wax Museum when no retail developer could be found to take it over.

In February 2013, Buena Park entered into a lease with Premier for 38,000 square feet of building space for the “Bodies” and Titanic displays.

The lease expired in January 2015, but Premier has been on a month-to-month basis, Lopez said.

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“We think this is going to be a great opportunity for those who haven’t seen the exhibit,” Duckett said of “Bodies.” “And we have a lot of regulars. On the educational side, we think it’s a major win, to provide what we feel is an unparalleled experience for students from the youngest, kindergarten to sixth grade, to high school, college and medical school. We want to encourage classes that want to come to sign up soon.”


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