I AM PROTECTIVE

I Am Protective
Tag

Community Attractions

Browsing

Southern Environmental Center Offers Hands-On Learning

If you follow the echo of giggles, you will find yourself looking at the rather large toilet in the former indoor pool building on the campus of Birmingham Southern College (BSC). It can flush an entire kid, sending him down a winding tunnel into the bottom of the emptied-out swimming pool. This toilet slide generates “gallons of giggles,” but it also illustrates for children wasteful water consumption. The massive commode is part of the Interactive Museum inside the Southern Environmental Center (SEC), and it, along with the other displays of trash heaps and old fashioned bicycles in the museum, is designed to teach people of all ages how they can help protect and improve their local environments. At 5,600-square-feet, it’s the largest education facility of its kind in Alabama. For Roald Hazeloff, the director of SEC, it was important that the center embody the spirit of the “Three Rs” –…

Spinning Tales about Endangered Species

With the details of each spin in his mind from a colorful menagerie of animals on a merry-go-round, Art Ritchie has built or restored at least five-dozen carousels in the 32 years since he and Daniel Jones founded Carousel Works in Mansfield, Ohio. But he specifically remembers the Protective Life Carousel at the Birmingham Zoo, because during his restoration work, one of the South’s infamous spring storms ripped the canopy for the carousel right off its cables. While it delayed the progress, it didn’t put a damper on the centerpiece of the Birmingham Zoo’s Children’s Zoo. Once installed, it immediately began entertaining guests of all ages, including Rusty Keene. Rusty moved from the Busch Gardens in Tampa, Florida to take over as Birmingham Zoo’s vice president of operations. A carousel aficionado, Keene was particularly impressed that Birmingham’s carousel was wooden. Wooden carousels are expensive, costing just over a half million…