The South Florida Science Center and Aquarium is giving visitors a chance to satisfy an itch to learn about the wondrous natures of blood-sucking parasites this summer with its interactive exhibition, “Eww! What’s Eating You?” The exhibit, designed to resemble a vintage traveling circus, opened May 3 and will be on display until September 27.
Let your skin crawl and feel your spine shiver while getting a closer look at some of the preserved and live parasitic organisms on display, including hookworms, leeches and mosquitoes. The exhibit will delve into the history of human and parasite interaction from the days of ancient Greece, Rome and Egypt to modern times.
The interactive part of the showcase comes in the form of activities such as the “Wheel of Probability,” in which participants can spin a wheel to illustrate the probability of being host to a parasite. Among others guaranteed to give you goose bumps include a “Funhouse” that demonstrates how head lice dwell in an oversized human scalp and a “Magic Mirror” that exemplifies the possible limb-enlarging effects after contracting elephantiasis, a disease caused by filarial worms. These activities are designed to teach children about parasites and their effects in a fun an interactive way.
The Wheel of Misfortune
“Parasites are a natural and important part of our ecosystem and they are everywhere and worth exploring,” said Lew Crampton, CEO of SFSCA. “’Eww! What’s Eating You?’ will explore the good, the bad and the ugly, of course behind the safety of glass enclosures. The must-see exhibit is perfect for our high-traffic summers, where kids and families flood the Science Center for educational fun and an opportunity to beat the heat. We encourage you to get your tickets and step right up, because a carnival of creatures is waiting to meet you!”
Children can also get a kick out of comedian and actor Carrot Top, who, as the video tour guide, serves as the ringleader of this critter carnival.
SFSCA, named the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches’ 2014 nonprofit of the year, will feature this exhibit all summer long, but guests can also take advantage of more than 50 other hands-on educational exhibits at the center. A ticket to “Eww! What’s Eating You?” will also gain you access to experience the center’s 8,000-gallon fresh and saltwater aquarium filled with marine life, conservation research station, digital planetarium and interactive Everglades exhibit.
- Admission to the science center during the exhibit is $15 for adults, $11 for children aged 3-12 and $13 for seniors aged 60 and up. Children younger than 3 years old and members of the center are free. For more information, visit sfsciencecenter.org.