When did you work for Discovery?
I started before Discovery opened in 1995, and stayed on as one of the two Visitor Services Managers for a few years.
What did you do?
Heaps of stuff! That’s one reason I loved working for Discovery. I worked with volunteers, trainees, and other paid staff; did science shows, and took outreach programs to schools, the most notable being the Coliban Water show which was a lot of fun (despite getting quite wet and cold some days!). We designed special programs for senior, TAFE courses and VCE groups, as well as primary and secondary students. I even went firewalking for Discovery – twice!
I remember that we were gearing up for the Megaslime holiday feature when my sister was visiting from interstate. I was making slime of various colours and will never forget her face when she saw my kitchen – slime galore …
Of course, Discovery didn’t have air conditioning back then, and I hadn’t realized that slime becomes less viscous with heat. We were sure to store those tiny plastic containers upright after finding a rainbow puddle one day!
Do you have a favourite Discovery memory?
Gosh, so many. I don’t think I can pick just one. I was just so proud of Discovery and what we were doing there! Earlier this week, I had dinner with a friend I hadn’t seen since those days. She remembered me showing her around Discovery and described how happy and proud I looked.
Why were you so proud of Discovery?
Growing up in a small town, I’ve always been a keen advocate for regional Australia, and Discovery was the first interactive science centre based in a regional city. I was proud to be a part of that. I really admired the vision Bendigo City Council and others had, of housing a new science centre in a heritage listed building. I loved the building – even with its heat during summer, and all the dust that Noel would vacuum up each morning! I was proud of the partnerships with other organisations, industry and business that our Director, Peter Comiskey, was able to negotiate. I was proud that we could take on trainees and help them gain valuable skills. I could keep going, but for the sake of brevity I’ll stop there!
Do you think Discovery should be saved?
Absolutely. It’s always much harder to build something up than to close it down.
How are you supporting the #saveDiscovery campaign?
I’m doing pro bono work for Discovery, advising on their crowdfunding campaign and the publicity around it, supporting the campaign on social media and managing this blog.
What would you like to say to other people?
Please help the team to save Discovery! Contribute to the crowdfunding campaign, share its link (chuffed.org/project/save-discovery) as much as you can on social media, talk to your friends and family, and visit the Centre if you haven’t been down for a while. You can get your picture taken with the #saveDiscovery sign, take some flyers for your neighbours, ring up the local radio station – get creative!