It is a dark time for science. Although myths and misinformation were once thought destroyed, climate-change deniers and other fact-adverse folks have driven rational people from their hidden echo chambers and pursued them across the galaxy.
Evading the dreaded Imperial Starfleet incoming administration, a group of science proponents led by Milwaukee-based event organizer Cedar Block have announced a new all-ages community science fair at the public charter school Escuela Verde.
The always-awesome Cedar Block, obsessed with spreading the word about its latest science-based venture, has dispatched the following information into the far reaches of Milwaukee cyberspace…
On Thursday, February 9, from 5-8 p.m., an all-ages community science fair dubbed “Science Strikes Back” will set up shop in Milwaukee’s Escuela Verde. Light years removed from styrofoam solar systems and baking soda volcanos, the STEAM-inspired event will encourage participants to devise and conduct unique, thoughtful, and scientifically sound experiments, and share them with the city. “Science Strikes Back” is the brainchild of Cedar Block, an organization that knows a thing or two about these things.
“Cedar Block organized three science fairs for grown-ups last decade, with fantastic results,” says director and curator (and occasional Milwaukee Record contributor) Brent Gohde in a press release. “And with science becoming a bit of an afterthought in recent elections, we want to—not make it great again, but make it cool again.”
Citizen scientists can apply via Cedar Block’s website until December 31 at 5 p.m. Entries should adhere to one of the four STEAM categories: science, technology, engineering, art, or math. In a nod to the wild and wooly Cedar Block science fairs of yesteryear, an additional “Weird Science” category will serve as a catch-all for more cheeky and out-there—though still scientific—projects. (Past experiments in this category have explored the relationship between the Nintendo Power Pad and ESP, and asked whether “vegans have a sense of humor.”)
Entries will be judged by “a citizen, a real-life scientist, and a young scientist.” Winners in each category will receive gift cards from area businesses, while the grand prize winner will go home with a sculpture from Milwaukee artist Mark Winter.
“Citizen scientists will compete against our seniors who are required to do a 3-credit community-based senior thesis project to graduate,” says Joey Zocher, advisor at Escuela Verde in a press release. “We’ve attended Cedar Block’s events in the past, and want to set an example for our kids to see a passion for lifelong learning in action.”
And there’s more! Like past Cedar Block science fairs, local bands and musicians are invited to write and record original science-themed songs for the event’s official soundtrack. More information on how to submit music can be found here. Let’s do this, Milwaukee—for science!