An average of 15,000 visitors take part in the public education program at Memorial’s Ocean Sciences Centre (OSC) between June 1 and Labour Day weekend in any given year. So when construction at the Logy Bay facility shut down public access to the site last summer, the fear of losing one of the region’s most popular tourist attractions was a valid concern.
Features of the program at the OSC include an outdoor touch tank where visitors can experience a variety of marine life; an outdoor observation platform for viewing their captive population of harp seals; and marine interpreters, primarily Memorial summer student staff, to answer questions and explain current research initiatives at the facility.
“We’ve been delivering this program since 1988 and rather than cancel the program entirely we decided to put the show on the road, using a portable touch tank and seal video presentation to visit local schools, kids’ summer camps and tourist destinations,” said Danielle Nichols, research marketing manager at the Ocean Sciences Centre.
“The students also set up temporary displays in and around the city of St. John’s in places such as Signal Hill and Cape Spear National Historic Sites, Memorial University’s Botanical Garden, the MUN Childcare Centre and the Easter Seals house.”
With a successful roadshow last summer, and construction at the facility still ongoing, the OSC intends to once again offer the free program to various institutions, companies, school groups, summer programs and tourist attraction locations in the region.
Bookings are already in place for a number of reoccurring appointments at Cape Spear, the Suncor Energy Fluvarium, MUN Botanical Garden, the Coastal Railway Museum and the Johnson GEO CENTRE. Appointments can still be booked on a first-come, first-served basis.
Danielle Nichols, Research Marketing Manager, OSC 709-864-2459 or firstname.lastname@example.org.