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Vulcanarium in Kamchatka

As a force of enthusiasts in the region, a unique modern museum

In Kamchatka, one volcano became more: the previously unknown volcano, which immediately became operational, was awakened in the center of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky - the first visit in Russia to the "Vulcanarium Volcanoes Museum in Kamchatka"

Vulcanarium in Kamchatka
Indigenous people believe that volcanoes are living organisms, and with their help the earth communicates with us, showing us its approval (or vice versa). It so happened that on June 15, 2017, on the opening day of the new museum, several Kamchatka volcanoes revived at once. At first, Shiveluch threw out an ash column at a height of 9 meters, apparently giving his consent and accepting the new volcano into his large family. Behind him, on the same day, the ash of the Klyuchevskoy volcano threw out, and the next day - the Bezymyanny volcano.

Two not indifferent, creative people, enthusiasts, lovers of Kamchatka - Samoilenko Sergey Borisovich and Alena Alexandrovna, made great efforts to do something similar and close to real volcanoes.

The path to the creation of the Museum was long, you can say "a lifetime". But when you love your small homeland - your Kamchatka, then you find in yourself the power to fulfill a dream, no matter how difficult or remote it may seem.

Sergey Borisovich - founder of the Museum, was born and raised in Kamchatka. He is a physicist by education, has been working at the Institute of Volcanology and Seismology of the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences for more than 10 years, a senior researcher.

At the age of 13, Sergei went to study on the "mainland" in Novosibirsk and immediately began to talk about Kamchatka, showing photographs, slides. He spent his holidays in Kamchatka and, returning to the mainland, brought stones in a suitcase, telling about the nature of their origin. He received his higher education in Novosibirsk, then went abroad, defended himself there, but he always knew that he would return to Kamchatka to do science and volcanology.

Possessing the talent of a good storyteller, Sergei Borisovich helped to organize regional holidays - "Days of the Volcano", taught guides. Soon, it began to go beyond a hobby. In 2016, creating with Alena Aleksandrovna the House of Entertaining Science and Creativity for Children "Interesarium", the founders realized that without volcanoes and without a story about Kamchatka, it will not just work. This is how the birth of the Museum of Volcanoes began.

"Interesting" and "Vulkanarim" - on the one hand, two different expositions, but one child. "Interest" opened 9 September 2016 year. The exposition, which is done in Volgograd for such kind of scientific museums, was based on the basis. But the organizers immediately began to redo it, now there are a lot of original developments, things. There are new interesting exhibits. Schoolchildren of the city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky themselves collected and presented "Intersarium" an apparatus that generates lightning - coil Tesla.

There are two museums in Kamchatka that tell about volcanoes in detail: KGBU Kamchatka Regional United Museum (local history) and the Scientific Museum of the Institute of Volcanology and Seismology of the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences. But they have different tasks. The Science Museum of the Institute of Volcanology and Seismology is a laboratory, a unit that stores a unique volcanological collection, invaluable to scientists, but which can only be shared with a small number of people. If 1000 tourists come there who want to visit this museum, then it will not cope with such a flow. Therefore, there is an insult among tourists, which is evident from the reviews: "a wonderful museum, but you can't get there, they don't let you in." Not that they don't let him in, he has a different task.

The Museum of Local Lore is a wonderful museum with a capital letter. With the foundation, with a scientific approach, it covers history, geology, biology, zoology. If there is to exhibit a large volcanological collection, then it will be necessary to press the birds, ethnos, history of the region.

The Vulcanarium Museum occupies a niche that the region, the city, was waiting for. He represents, finally, everything that in half a century the Institute of Volcanology and Seismology was able to accumulate. In the best of times, the Institute employed more than 700 people. Now there are more 200 employees, and these are all the people who devoted their lives to studying Kamchatka and, of course, this knowledge needs lighting. Therefore, "Vulcanarium" is the place where the organizers showed the Kamchatka Territory and the knowledge accumulated by the Institute for 55 years of work, while being able to step over the museum's framework, making it interactive.

Sergey Borisovich is a big supporter of "informal education" - individual cognitive activity outside the framework of general educational programs, when a person, by his own activity, begins to study what is interesting to him. This is self-education and education as a way of life, when a person seeks knowledge himself as he becomes interested in it. With the development of the Internet, this has become more and more possible. The Vulkanarium Museum cannot tell absolutely everything, but it can show you where to go deep, what you can be interested in. Its interactivity is manifested in the fact that almost all exhibits can be touched, viewed, including through a magnifying glass. There is no point in pocketing it, because outside of the story, these samples lose interest. The task of the Museum is to show both the tourist and the city what they see under their feet every day, but they habitually ignore. There are also unique specimens, but there are not so many of them, and they are not the strength of the Museum. In the future, funds will grow, people themselves will bring the rare and unusual. But now it is more important to raise the stone and tell what is interesting about it, so that this stone becomes a “speaking” model for a tourist or for a resident. Therefore, at first glance, there are very simple "stones", but each of them tells a lot about his volcano, from which he appeared. The Museum will explain to us why volcanic lakes have such an unusual color and how it relates to the color of blue eyes, blue sky and moonstone. A very interesting story about the origin of life on the planet, about a wide variety of stones, no less than that of living organisms.

There is a very unusual corner - a piece of Kamchatka tundra with living lichens that can be fed - sprinkled from the spray with rainwater and viewed through a magnifying glass as they unfold from the abundance of moisture. Here the Museum again goes beyond the scope of volcanology, the organizers wanted the visitor to see this wonderful world, by which he usually passes. After all, there is an entire universe, all living things. When a person is outside the city, he will remember what he saw and what he now knows. A meaningful view is always a different view, and this is one of the goals of the work of the Museum.

Tsunami model, physical model of lava flow - the Museum has not only something to tell, but also something to show. The same ordinary candle that burns in our house is a small physical model of a lava flow. We will be told about this connection, and already at home, by looking at the candle, a person will be able to hear the voice of the earth. A live three-dimensional cartoon, made according to the original technology, will show how dry rivers pulsate. One exhibit contains several completely new solutions at once. The theory of dry rivers, the study of dry rivers is a new word in hydrology, they are being studied right now. And the three-dimensional image of the cartoon, which does not require any glasses or assistive devices, is also a certain know-how. The Museum combined both the original content and the original performance to create an exhibit completely unlike anything else. 3D printing has allowed the creation of a collection of volcanoes with geographic accuracy. They are all made on the same scale. In fact, they are scattered throughout Kamchatka, and in the Museum they are all brought together, and the viewer can see how big Shiveluch is in comparison with Karymsky, how grand the Klyuchevskaya group of volcanoes is and why the Klyuchevskoy volcano, although it is the highest, is not the largest (Shiveluch much more). It will be interesting for a person who has never seen volcanoes, as well as for those who have already been on an excursion to the Valley of Geysers. Now tourists visiting Kamchatka will become more meaningful, even brighter, the view from the helicopter window will become familiar.  

The organizers proudly report that the Museum was created by the townspeople. This is not some kind of corporation, not an order of the federal government. This is the initiative of the city. And everyone who participated in the construction is the city's enterprises, the indifferent people who helped with the photographs, with the design, there are also artists and propogors, electricians, children who made furniture, invented how to launch the lava flow, how to make a flash of lightning. This is the most valuable. Such a people's building has turned out. There was no contractor, it was all based on the fact that people came together and began to do such a museum together for themselves. The organizers put a lot of effort into the Museum to add paint to the city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The designer Tatyana Sukhina managed to make the exposition of the highest level. After all, it's one thing to submit information in an accessible form and quite another - it's also bright, it's nice to file it.

The museum is designed for both tourists and residents of the city. Nobody will be left offended. At the end of the tourist season, there will be separate offers for the townspeople. In the Museum, local residents are awaited with special trepidation, they will be told why the sand is black and magnetic, how Avacha Bay is arranged, what are the names of all the hills that surround the city, which one is a volcano, and which one is just a mountain, from which Mishennaya Sopka is made, how pieces of obsidian appear in the city, rolling along the bottom of the bay from the opposite shore. When you live in a world in which you understand everything, and the attitude is different: the city and the region are perceived as their own home.

The organizers position their business as a socially oriented business. Children from orphanages, from disadvantaged families come to museums, there is a fixed discount for large families, and special offers for families who come in full. Children with developmental delays come, they are given attention with their own special approach. For those who cannot come to the Museum of Volcanoes due to their territorial remoteness, with the support of the Government, trips to the regions will be organized - Days of Science. A scientific troop is assembled, and part of the exhibition travels to another city.

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