Calgary’s Spark science centre set to reopen June 18

The Telus Spark Science Centre is reopening on June 18, with a couple of new features to entice guests. ETHAN WARD / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY

Science will be the talk of the town later this week as another Calgary landmark will be opening its doors again this summer.

On June 18, all ages will be able to embrace their inner child and desire for discovery as the Telus Spark Science Centre reopens.

There will be a few added twists to the reopening. Several new features were implemented during the current closure that began in December. That will all come with certain measures attempting to make the reopening as safe as possible.

New features

The largest new feature is the new Rocket Fuel café in the main lobby of the science centre.

Rocket Fuel will feature Monogram coffee, but the biggest draw is the astronaut ice cream promotion. There will be a flavour of ice cream representing each planet of the solar system, including Pluto.

These treats will be available to everyone, not just people who come to visit the science centre. No entry fee needed to enjoy these frozen creations.

In addition the cafe, a new feature exhibit has made its way to the science centre. This will also tie into the theme of planetary exploration.

Jacqueline Tran, marketing and communications specialist for the science centre said that the new exhibit, One day on Venus, will demonstrate to visitors what it’s like to spend some time on the hostile planet.

“It’s this bubble-gum pink environment that fills up half our atrium. People will walk through the area and feel like they’ve been transported to Venus. They’ll see what a living room or a bathroom would be like on Venus. Or what it would be like to sunbathe. It’s a very Instagramable experience,” Tran said.

The informative experience wouldn’t have been possible without community collaboration. Deepwater Farms and the Calgary Centre for Newcomers helped collaborate on its creation. The artwork for the exhibit was created by Blackfoot First Nation artist Joey Big Snake, and knowledge from Kainai Elder Casey Eagle Speaker helped make it possible, as said in a prepared press release.

Changing landscape of the centre

With these new features, new safety precautions have been added. Timed ticketing is now in place, which makes sure people show up at specific 30-minute windows after reserving a ticket online. Various hands-on exhibits have also been closed off.

Renovations are also going to change the look of the science centre. Returning visitors will see that it has received an upgrade.

“What used to be the energy and innovation gallery is being transformed into Canada’s first permanent digital immersion gallery. We wanted to make it as inclusive as possible for guests, and the gallery will be changing quite frequently in terms of content,” Tran said.

This is all coming out amid the centre’s 10th anniversary.

“It is a tough year to turn 10. When it opened its current location in 2011, TELUS Spark Science Centre was the first purpose-built science centre in the country in 25 years,” as said in a prepared media release from the Spark Science Centre.

A larger event to celebrate the anniversary is still in the works. In the meantime, there will be smaller events sprinkled throughout the year. The opening of the Rocket Fuel café being one of those commemorative events.

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