Ontario Science Centre Wins Prestigious International Award for the Weston Family Innovation Centre

    TORONTO, Oct. 23 /CNW/ - The Association of Science-Technology Centers
(ASTC) awarded the Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge Award for Visitor Experience in
a large institution to the Ontario Science Centre for the creation of the
Weston Family Innovation Centre. The award was presented at the ASTC 2008
Annual Conference in Philadelphia, PA. A cornerstone of the Ontario Science
Centre's Agents of Change initiative, the Weston Family Innovation Centre
provides a dramatic environment where new experiences designed for teens and
young adults encourage the skills, attitudes and behaviours that enable
innovation and stimulate visitors to think differently about themselves and
the world around them.
    This annual award from the ASTC is granted to institutions showing
extraordinary leadership in developing experiences that not only enhance the
performance of their own institutions, but also significantly advance the
mission of science-technology centers and museums. Specifically targeted to an
exhibition opened in the last three years, the Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge
Award recognizes the Weston Family Innovation Centre and the Ontario Science
Centre as leaders and trendsetters in developing new approaches to visitor
engagement and serving as a model for science centres in the 21st century.
    "It is very exciting to receive this recognition from peers in the global
science centre community for our work to redefine and revitalize the science
centre experience for our visitors," said Lesley Lewis, CEO, Ontario Science
Centre. "I applaud the Ontario Science Centre's core project team for
sustaining the culture of innovation at all stages, from initial idea
generation to final experience execution, with no past precedent to guide
their work. I further commend all staff at the Science Centre for embracing
the resulting new form of science centre experience."
    The Weston Family Innovation Centre is named in honour of the Weston
family who made an exceptional $15 million lead gift to the Agents of Change
transformation initiative through The W. Garfield Weston Foundation. Public
and private sector organizations including the Government of Ontario, TELUS,
"knowledge partner" DuPont Canada, and the Department of Canadian Heritage as
well as individual donors also supported the Ontario Science Centre's vision
and transformation.

    About The Association of Science-Technology Centre (ASTC)

    The Association of Science-Technology Centers is an organization of 540
science centers and museums in 44 countries dedicated to furthering the public
understanding of science among increasingly diverse audiences. ASTC encourages
excellence and innovation in informal science learning by serving and linking
its members worldwide and advancing their common goals. ASTC provides
professional development for the science center field, promotes best
practices, supports effective communication, strengthens the position of
science centers within the community at large, and fosters the creation of
successful partnerships and collaborations.

    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. The Centre is also a leading developer of
interactive exhibitions for science centres around the world. The Ontario
Science Centre is an agency of the Government of Ontario.

For further information:

For further information: ASTC website: www.astc.org; Ontario Science
Centre website: www.ontariosciencecentre.org; Media Contacts: Anna Relyea,
Associate Director, Strategic Communications: (416) 696-3273 or
anna.relyea@osc.on.ca; Ellen Flowers, Media Relations Officer: (416) 696-3154
or ellen.flowers@osc.on.ca

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