Kids at Vernon’s Okanagan Science Centre got an up-close and immersive view of oceanic life Wednesday, courtesy of Ocean Wise’s Sea Dome program.
Ocean Wise, a non-profit ocean conservation association based in Vancouver, brought its brand-new six-metre dome projector to the centre to guide lessons on ocean health, and to encourage people to take action to help oceans flourish.
“It’s a 360-degree projection in 4K and it shows a whole lot of really fun underwater footage,” said Kaja Verret Holding, assistant manager of Ocean Wise’s mobile team, which has been travelling throughout Western Canada this year as part of a four-year nationwide tour.
“What we’re looking to do is get people excited about ocean animals and different ecosystems, to have them start thinking about the ocean and then making their own personal connections to the ocean, as well as stopping for a moment to see how the ocean helps us and then how we can help the ocean as well.”
@kelownacapnews Learn about the sea from under a dome at the Okanagan Science Centre #vernon #ocean #oceanlife #mermaid #fish #water #ocean #okanagan #science ♬ The Little Mermaid: Under The Sea - Geek Music
On Wednesday a group of summer camp kids watched as whales, octopi, jellyfish and other sea critters made their way around the domed screen. The mobile team also had marine artifacts from sea turtle shells to a humpback whale rib for guests to see and touch.
The experience is intended to show the connections between ocean health, climate change and daily life while getting kids excited about ocean conservation.
“It’s a great opportunity to be able to bring the ocean here to Vernon,” said Dione Chambers, the centre’s executive director, who was expecting about 100 people to make their way through the exhibit.
The one-day-only event moved to the BC Wildlife Park in Kamloops Thursday, Aug. 18. Visits to schools in the Lower Mainland are coming up this fall.
Those who missed out on Wednesday’s dome experience won’t have to wait long for another opportunity. Chambers said the Okanagan Science Centre has recently fundraised for a new projector and will be able to offer 27 different dome shows by late September, with themes including astronomy, geology, oceans and dinosaurs.