‘Earthquake’ rumbles through Golden Gate Park

If you ever wondered what it felt like to live through the chilling tremors of the 1906 7.9–magnitude San Francisco earthquake, now you can experience it at the California Academy of Sciences new exhibit: “Earthquake.”

The 8,000-square-foot exhibit opened on Saturday and explores the history and science of earthquakes.

It features fossils, maps, and a mechanical “shake house” that simulates the tremors felt during the 1906 San Francisco and 1989 Loma Prieta quakes while you stand in a mock Victorian house.

The exhibit also features a new planetarium show that takes visitors through the San Andreas fault, into the Earth’s core, and explains how earthquakes work.

Academy engagement officer Elizabeth Bobcock told the Ex that the show’s goal is to explain that:

“seismic phenomena are just one part of a much larger story …  that we live on a markedly dynamic planet.”

If you ever wondered how the mysterious single supercontinent Pangea broke up, the exhibit has live baby Ostriches on display to show how birds had a common ancestor but evolved into different species as the continents drifted away.

Greg Farrington, executive director of the Academy, told the Ex:

“We are no strangers to the awesome power of earthquakes and by showing visitors the science that underlies these natural events, we want to encourage preparedness and help visitors understand how the great movements of the continents have produced the landscape we call home today and the life around us.”

The exhibit also prepares visitors in the unfortunate event that a major earthquake hits the Bay Area again. They teach you how to build an earthquake emergency kit and give important tips on how to stay safe during and after a quake.