Luther College co-hosts Welcome Home Party for Decorah Sea Scorpion

November 2, 2022

At 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 17, at Impact Coffee, the Luther College Environmental Studies Program will present a model of the giant sea scorpion found in the Decorah Crater basin. This event is sponsored by the Environmental Studies Program, Visit Decorah, the Decorah Area Chamber of Commerce, Winneshiek County Development and Tourism, Northeast Iowa RC&D and Winneshiek County Conservation. Additional work is in progress by these groups to develop more public information related to the crater and its discovery.

The Decorah sea scorpion, Pentecopterus decorahensis, is a fossil discovery from the Decorah Crater basin, which was formed by a meteor impact around 465 million years ago. It is the oldest sea scorpion fossil ever found and one of the largest at over six feet long. The life-sized model is on loan to Luther’s Environmental Studies Program from the Iowa Geological Survey at the University of Iowa. It will be moved to a more permanent display location in Valders Hall of Science at Luther College next spring, where it will remain accessible to the public for viewing.

“We’re excited to have the sea scorpion model visit Impact Coffee, where many people will have the opportunity to see it,” said Laura Peterson, professor of environmental studies. “There are so many wonderful things about Decorah, and the impact crater and its fossils are pieces of our geologic history that help make Decorah unique, both above ground and below. It’s exciting to be able to share more of this story with the community.”  

Immediately following the welcome home party, C&C Trivia at Impact Coffee will include crater-related questions. The event is open to the public with no charge for admission.

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