Visitors can create their own volcanos by determining the amounts of silica and gas.

A famous founding father once said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” 

Benjamin Franklin was a brilliant mind and a man one who should be admired for the vision he had for colonial unity in the beginning stages of our country's resistance to British rule. But sometimes Franklin's intuition to prepare, a notion he frequently expressed and reinforced when he facilitated one of the earliest civic organizations—a fire department, is forgotten.

Southern Utahns, especially, can be thankful for fire departments because of the rampant wildfires scorching grasslands across the state. In August, the Patch Spring Fire burned nearly 31,000 acres of forest land and cut powerlines and forced hundreds to evacuate. Other natural disasters can come without warning, and Utahns should be prepared.

Luckily, the Preparedness Fair storms into town for a two-day disaster prevention extravaganza Sept. 27 and 28. In conjunction with the Field Museum in Chicago, the Natural History Museum of Utah will showcase the many ways one can prepare for disaster. “In the context of the exhibit, we want to raise awareness of the importance of preparation for natural disasters . . . not only through individual preparation but how we can prepare together as a community,” says Lisa Thompson, project manager for Natural History Museum of Utah.

The SLC Fire Department will be on hand to teach fire safety and let guests explore an array of firetrucks. The University of Utah Seismograph Station will have scientists available for Q&As on earthquake preparation, and Queststar Gas will be available to show how to safely turn off and on gas meters. A plethora of other organizations will be prepared to show and educate you on disaster safety.

The Preparedness Fair promises not only an educational walk-around but a fun weekend activity for the whole family.

The Natural History Museum of Utah is located at 301 Wakara Way, Salt Lake City. Click here for more info.