Allstate Insurance Canada Sponsors: Earthquakes, hurricanes and tornadoes heading for the Ontario Science Center

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(Toronto, ON Feb 9, 2011) – Natural disasters have an incredible draw on human attention and memory – whether it was feeling our floor shake in Ontario last summer, seeing images of the fallout of Hurricane Katrina, hearing about the destruction following the earthquake in Haiti, or watching the reports of the tsunami that eliminated entire communities around the Indian Ocean. Time and time again nature acts dramatically, and the impact can be devastating.

Nature Unleashed: Inside Natural Disasters, the Ontario Science Centre’s latest temporary exhibition reveals the dynamic relationship we have with the Earth by exploring the science behind natural disasters.

“The Science Centre engages people with science-based issues of local, national and global relevance. Our interactive environment is key to understanding and discovery,” said Lesley Lewis, CEO of the Ontario Science Centre. “Nature Unleashed will provide our visitors with an impressive and powerful hands-on experience of the forces of nature at work.”

“Families in search of exciting things to explore this Family Day or March Break won’t have to go far,” said Michael Chan, Minister of Tourism and Culture. “Nature Unleashed offers audiences of all ages a unique opportunity to experience the thrilling power of nature.”

“Helping people prepare for, and recover from natural disasters is a huge part of our business,” said Chris Kiah, President and CEO of Allstate Insurance Company of Canada. “We’re proud to be the national tour sponsor of an exhibit that will enrich our community while stimulating the imaginations of children and adults.”

Nature Unleashed concentrates on four types of disasters – earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, and tornadoes – through stunning displays, state-of-the-art animations, large-scale images and cultural displays. These phenomena are the spectacular results of the forces that drive our evolving planet. From Pompeii to Papua New Guinea to New Orleans to Ontario’s own Hurricane Hazel, Nature Unleashed examines the science behind the history and the headlines of natural disasters.

The exhibition demonstrates nature’s power and provides the opportunity to learn about the science of these mighty forces. A greater understanding of how these natural disasters that occur around the world can help us better prepare for, and in some cases minimize, the impact of nature’s fury.

Science Centre visitors can simulate standing inside a roaring tornado, trigger an underwater earthquake and replicate a tsunami, create a virtual volcano, touch and examine real rock and lava specimens that tell of past geologic events, discover how people adapt to living at risk and be inspired by the resiliency of disaster survivors. The exhibition stresses that storms, volcanic eruptions, and other events are completely natural phenomena. Whether they become a disaster or not depends on how we react and the choices we make.

More recently, scientists are putting a sharper focus on the links between global warming and weather-related natural disasters. Nature Unleashed examines the potential impact that increasingly warm air and sea temperatures can have on causing more severe storms.

The exhibition runs from Feb. 11, 2011 to May 1, 2011, and is free with admission to the Ontario Science Centre. Prices are: Adults $20, Youth/Students (with ID) and Seniors $16, Children (4-12) $13. Children three and under are free. The Ontario Science Centre is open 364 days a year, closed December 25th. Opening hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at www.OntarioScienceCentre.ca, at the box office, or by calling 416-696-1000.

About the Ontario Science Centre

The Ontario Science Centre uses science as the lens to inspire and actively engage people in new ways of seeing, understanding and thinking about themselves and the world around them. The Ontario Science Centre is an agency of the Government of Ontario. For more information, visit www.OntarioScienceCentre.ca or call our box office at 416-696-1000. Twitter: @ontsciencectr

This exhibition and its national tour were developed by the Field Museum, Chicago.
National Tour Sponsor: Allstate Insurance Company of Canada

About Allstate Insurance Company of Canada

Allstate Insurance Company of Canada is one of Canada’s leading producers and distributors of home and auto insurance products. “The Good Hands Network®” enables consumers to contact Allstate Canada through one of 93 community-based Agencies, directly online at www.allstate.ca and through the Customer Contact Centre at 1-800-Allstate. Allstate Canada is committed to making a positive difference in the communities in which it operates and has partnered with organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD Canada), Crime Stoppers, United Way and Junior Achievement.