Since April more than 20,000 Pennsylvanians, predominantly school children, have viewed the displays in an energy on wheels exhibit, underwritten largely by oil and gas companies and suppliers, staffed by volunteers and housed in a brightly colored, 42-foot trailer truck.
The Mobile Energy Education Training Unit (MEET-U) exhibit, including audio/video film clips of where and how different forms of energy are produced, before and after drilling operations, and interactive question/answer touch screens, officially went on the road with a permanent exhibit in April after beta testing in 2009.
“The original plan was for a 14-foot trailer and an audience of elementary school children,” said MEET-U director Dan Weaver, the only paid staffer. As more people became interested and donations grew, the plans expanded to the larger exhibit which can be tailored also for high school students, the general public and the industry itself.
Its future bookings include schools, county fairs and other community and business events in New York and Ohio, as well as Pennsylvania, with the potential for as many as 500,000 visitors. The idea started in 2007 as a temporary replacement for the Drake Well Museum, commemorating the first oil well drilled in Titusville, PA in 1859, which was to be closed for renovation.
Weaver suggested the larger concept, and the Friends of Drake Well began contributing money and employee time. One of its recent stops was the Pennsylvania Oil & Gas Association’s three-day Eastern Oil and Gas Conference and Trade Show in Monroeville, PA. “There should be a fleet of these across the country,” one industry visitor commented. Visit www.meet-unit.com and www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yp9fkjpu7IM for more information.
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