CHICAGO (CBS) – You won’t get bitten, but you just might get a good scare if you climb onto the Art Institute’s famous decorative lions.
The venerable museum is trying out a new after-hours alarm system that emits a recorded roar when mischievous bipeds get too close to the statues along the Michigan Avenue entrance.
A second audio snippet warns would-be lion crawlers that the Art Institute will alert police if they don’t back off.
The museum installed the canned-roar system for the NATO summit in May, public-affairs director Erin Hogan tells CBS 2’s Roseanne Tellez.
“That was when we decided it would be an effective way to keep people off the lions,” she said Friday. “We don’t want to scare them to death, we want to remind them that these are wild beasts and they shouldn’t be climbed.”
People love to snap photos of the feline sentries, but they shouldn’t be pawed by humans, Hogan says. The bronze lions are considered works of art and were donated to the museum in 1893. It’s also not safe to be climbing around the pedestaled works, she says.