2.3 Extreme Weather Experience: Experiential Weather Edutainment

Monday, 8 January 2018: 2:30 PM
Ballroom E (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Erik Salna, Extreme Events Institute, Florida International Univ., Miami, FL

Imagine a place where you would experience the weather, and actually feel the wind, rain, and snow. Imagine experiencing the roller-coaster ride of a hailstone or flying into the eye of a hurricane. Imagine a place where visitors would Turn Around, Don’t Drown or When Thunder Roars, Go Indoors! That place will be Extreme Weather Experience (EWE). EWE is a one-of-a-kind concept to develop a national network of weather education-entertainment (edutainment) resilience centers that will include experiential, immersive, weather-themed attractions and rides, an operational weather forecast center, a multi-media broadcast center, retail, art, music and even live theater shows. EWE visitors will “experience” extreme weather in a very real, almost frightening way, through special effects, animatronics, and the newest cutting-edge, creative technologies, including virtual and augmented reality. Behind EWE entertainment will be Weather-Ready Nation education: meteorology, mitigation, resilience, safety and preparedness. EWE education will be presented with the attractions, rides and exhibits in a variety of methods and techniques. The purpose is to motivate visitors to take action to prepare, protect, mitigate and safeguard their families, homes and businesses. Visitors will be empowered with real lifesaving takeaways resulting in meaningful changed behavior. The result will be a more Weather-Ready Nation, more resilient to extreme weather!
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