School Shows

Mysteries of the Great Lakes

Mysteries of the Great Lakes

It takes a drop of water nearly 400 years to travel from the headwaters of Lake Superior to the edge of Lake Ontario. The story will take audiences on an inspiring voyage through these amazing inland seas. In the film, a few stops along the way highlight the stories of three key species—one each from water, air, and land. The film also turns the camera on us, as humans—nearly 40 million people who live along the more than 10,000 miles of coastline—by touching on the human interface with the Lakes. This includes the role of shipping in relation to commerce, the use of the Great Lakes’ water by the millions of people who rely on it for life, and the general sense of wellbeing that people receive from simply being near these massive bodies of water.

Along the way, the water passes by towering cliffs dotted with early Native American pictographs, caribou and moose grazing on the shores, and towering trees with massive eagle nests and their majestic occupants. To capture shots of breeding pairs of bald eagles, platforms with blinds had to be built 80 feet in the air the previous winter. Then, in the spring, the crew used pulleys and ropes to lift the gear into the trees in the dead of night and leave silently with the photographer behind the blind, ready to shoot at first light.

As these waters pass over giant prehistoric sturgeon lurking among nearly ten thousand shipwrecks, the filming crew goes underwater and up rivers. Filming took the production crews from beneath the waves of the Wolf River in Wisconsin—where thousands of lake sturgeon, the world’s largest freshwater fish, thrash in the shallow rapids en route to their spawning grounds—into the skies to shoot aerial footage of all of the Great Lakes. It is a dramatic journey through some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. Now, you can witness the Mysteries of the Great Lakes on our planetarium dome.